Randal Cousineau, a 69-year-old man from Farmington, Maine, plead guilty on Wednesday to distributing over $13 million of illegal marijuana over multiple state lines. According to court records, Randal Cousineau was the main financier of the operation and faces life in prison.
Cousineau allegedly included many Maine police officers and sheriff’s deputies to aide in the production and elude prosecution. Franklin County Deputy Sheriffs Bradley Scovil and Derick Doucette abused law enforcement information, according to NBC News, to tip off Lucas Sirois, 41, who is thought to be the head of the Farmington operation.
Court documents alleged that that the two officers used their law enforcement resources to gather information about the federal investigation of Sirois’ illegal marijuana enterprise, which they were rewarded for with stylish cars and ownership interest.
The scheme went even deeper into Maine’s law enforcement officers however, alleging that Wilton Officer Kevin Lemay and Dixfield town manager James McLamb helped delete electronic evidence of the police’s involvement in the operation. Franklin county Assistant District Attorney Kayla Alves was also listed as a town official that helped to hide criminal activity from investigators.
Walt McKee, an attorney who represents Kayla Alves, said that she is not only innocent, but that it was “disappointing to see her dragged into all of this.”
In a brief statement, The president of the Maine Chiefs of Police Association said that the news was “very upsetting.”
“The Maine Chiefs of Police Association has always stood for equal application of the laws to everyone in the state of Maine and we are confident in the next phase of the judicial system to adjudicate this case accordingly,” the statement read.
Over twelve people are expected to appear before the federal court over the next few days of the trial, including David Burgess, a man accused of taking tens of thousands of dollars to speak positively about Lucas Sirois and Randal Cousineau at governmental town meetings.
NBC News reported that Burgess also helped managed the illegal marijuana business for thousands of dollars a week and helped advocate for a new marijuana town ordinance that Sirois wrote himself.
According to ABC News, the marijuana business was grown for registered caregivers, but was being illegally sold outside of its state allowances. The profits were then laundered into a separate corporate account and filed in false tax returns.
“In order to conceal his activities and maximize his profits from illegal drug trafficking,” court documents stated, “Sirois laundered drug proceeds through a complex corporate structure. He lied to his financial institution about the nature of his business and the source of funds that flowed through his accounts… resulting in tax loss to the United States in excess of $400,000.”
Charged in court records, prosecutors argue that “Sirois defrauded the taxpayers of the state of Maine by using his drug money to corrupt members of local law enforcement and town government,” aside from the illegal marijuana business.
Timothy Parlatore, Lucas Sirois’ attorney, said that he and Randal Cousineau “took great steps to ensure that he was acting in accordance with Maine law.”
State law in Maine allows for the sale of medical and recreational marjiuana, but its use across state lines turned it into a federal case.
The attorney for Sirois’ estranged wife, Alisa Sirois, also echoed that “The ‘war on drugs’ may still be ongoing, but the white flag on marijuana was raised years ago.”
Parlatore alleged that Sirois’ business was strictly legal, up to code, and that the federal charges were based on “the words of a disgruntled former employee.”
“What he’s doing is legal under state law,” attorney’s continued. “This is not something the feds should be involving themselves with.”