Trial To Start For Two In Operation Doughboy
A parade of cocaine dealers who confessed their involvement in Operation Doughboy will testify in the trial of two remaining co-conspirators.
Keith S. Young, 47, of Electric City, Wash., and Edelmire “Eddie” Tamiz, 38, of Pasco, are charged with conspiracy to distribute cocaine.
The pair are the only defendants in the case to not cut plea bargains for lighter sentences.
The names of other defendants, including James Larsen and Clarence “Cip” Paulsen III, were on lists of prospective witnesses read to the jury panel.
Young and Tamiz are accused of being major suppliers of cocaine to Larsen, a Spokane tavern owner.
Larsen is expected to testify today after opening statements by assistant U.S. attorneys Tom Rice and Stephanie Johnson.
Larsen, 37, cut a deal to avoid life in prison and pleaded guilty in November to conspiracy to distribute as much as 330 pounds of cocaine.
He is facing eight years in prison, but his sentencing has been postponed until after he testifies against Young and Tamiz.
Monday was spent selecting a jury, with Judge Fred Van Sickle asking prospective jurors if they had heard or read about the case.
After the jury was empaneled and sent home, Young’s attorney, Garth Dano, asked the judge to dismiss the charge because prosecutors waited until last week to supply investigative documents.
Those documents include a diary from Hal Turner, an ex-convict from Montana who is the primary informant in the Doughboy case.
After befriending Larsen at gambling tables, Turner became his cocaine deliveryman. Turner secretly provided investigators with names of dozens of cocaine users in Spokane and North Idaho.
The judge denied the motion to dismiss the charge, but granted another defense request that prevents federal prosecutors or their witnesses from using the term “Operation Doughboy.”