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Patrick Roger Brigaudin


Over a period of six years, Patrick Roger Brigaudin put more than $10 million into slot machines in Quapaw, Okla.

He took home about $8.4 million.

That’s the cost of laundering drug money at a casino.

On Wednesday, a federal judge in Springfield, Mo., sentenced the 56-year-old to 30 years in prison. Because there is no parole in the federal system, Brigaudin won’t get out until he is in his 80s, if he lives that long. He has high blood pressure and diabetes.

“I’m sorry I didn’t stop all this on my own,” Brigaudin said to the judge, according to the Springfield News-Leader.

Brigaudin, whom the government said was the head of a drug gang, pleaded guilty to distributing Mexican meth and money laundering.

He arranged to have meth from Mexico delivered to Missouri and last met his supplier, “George,” in Cancun. There were 14 other defendants in the case.

“The methamphetamine distributed by the defendant affected the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of people in southwest Missouri,” the government’s sentencing memorandum said, “including the addicts who used the methamphetamine sold by the defendant and his associates, as well as the families, of those addicted and other members of the community who face the repercussions of methamphetamine use.”

Brigaudin and two others were arrested in February 2016 as about 12 pounds of meth and more than 6 pounds of heroin were being removed from a hidden compartment under the bed of a truck in Brigaudin’s garage.

Brigaudin’s criminal history includes being a felon in possession of a firearm and possessing a controlled substance.

The News-Leader reported that court documents show the investigation into Brigaudin started in 2013, when authorities connected his operation to a 30-pound meth bust in Lawrence County, Mo.

Brigaudin’s defense attorney noted to the court that there were no acts of violence associated with the drug operation. A letter of support said Brigaudin is remorseful, has “a heart of gold” and cared for his late mother with Alzheimer’s in his home.