Federal prosecutors have indicted a violent convicted drug trafficker for fentanyl distribution after a Virginia prosecutor boosted by the left-wing billionaire George Soros released the felon without bail just a day after his arrest.
Alpha Kamara last week was charged and taken into federal custody for conspiracy to distribute 400 grams or more of fentanyl, according to a Justice Department filing unsealed on Monday. The indictment supersedes charges brought by Fairfax County commonwealth's attorney Steve Descano (D.), who on June 27 filed charges against Kamara for the same case, only to release the offender without bail one day after his arrest.
The Justice Department's decision to charge Kamara ensures Descano's office won't mishandle the case. Descano has a history of releasing offenders before trial, dropping charges, and reducing sentences—sometimes with deadly consequences. His office last year dropped felony charges for a man who was charged later for killing two homeless men and wounding three others in New York City and Washington, D.C. In June, the prosecutor released on probation a violent repeat offender who went on to beat an elderly homeless woman to death at a bus stop.
Descano's soft-on-crime approach is typical of Soros-backed prosecutors, who have in the past decade received more than $40 million in donations from the Democratic megadonor. Soros contributed more than half-a-million dollars to Descano's campaign, along with fellow far-left Virginia prosecutors Buta Biberaj in Loudoun County and Parisa Dehghani-Tafti in Arlington County, dwarfing any other donation amounts in the races and helping to oust veteran prosecutors. Fueled by citizens' concerns over rising crime and lenient prosecution, recall efforts have spawned in each of the three Virginia counties, as well as in major cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles. In the Bay Area, city residents in June voted out far-left prosecutor Chesa Boudin by double digits. Top Democrats in Virginia are similarly courting candidates to challenge Biberaj.
Virginia State Police arrested Kamara on June 26 following a high-speed chase involving a stolen vehicle that ended in a crash on a highway interstate. State troopers seized a loaded 9 mm handgun and more than two kilos of fentanyl pills from the wrecked car, and Kamara was charged with driving without a license, failing to stop at the scene of an accident, resisting arrest, eluding police, grand larceny auto theft, and possession with intent to distribute a schedule I substance. He had been out of federal prison and on supervised release for just three days before his June joyride, having served slightly less than the length of his five-year sentence.
Descano's decision to release Kamara before his trial surprised prosecutors who spoke with the Free Beacon, given his criminal record. Virginia Republican attorney general Jason Miyares said the release was "just another example of the criminal-first, victim-last mentality pushed by far-left prosecutors."
"Fentanyl has rapidly become one of the most dangerous opioids to infect neighborhoods across our country," Miyares said. "Nationally, we've lost 105,000 Americans to overdoses from opioids, most commonly fentanyl. Continually letting repeat offenders get back onto the street only encourages more crime and creates even more victims. I am grateful for our partners in the DOJ stepping up when these local prosecutors fail to do their jobs."
The 25-year-old felon's first brush with law enforcement came in 2018, when he was sentenced to five years in prison as part of a major federal crackdown on Blood gang members and violent drug dealers in Northern Virginia. Operation Tin Panda, a joint effort between the FBI and ATF, resulted in 36 convictions and seized scores of firearms and hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and assets, as well as hundreds of pounds of drugs, including cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin. The federal agencies greenlighted the operation following a series of murders and violent incidents in Prince William County.
After publication of this article, Descano's office told the Free Beacon it is not able to participate in the arraignment process for defendants—a fact that former members of the Fairfax County commonwealth's attorneys office disputed—and Kamara's release was decided by a county magistrate. The office also said it learned of the release too late to file a motion to apprehend Kamara before he was in federal custody.
"We have always believed that this individual represented a danger to the public and should be held," a spokeswoman for the office said. "We were therefore dismayed that he was released prior to the point in the proceedings at which our office can be involved and pleased to learn from our partners in federal law enforcement, with whom we were coordinating throughout, that they were taking action to get him off the streets. We will pursue our charges in this case vigorously."
A preliminary hearing for the county charges is scheduled in August.
Descano during his tenure has abolished cash bail, told his attorneys to avoid mandatory minimum jail sentencing, and declined to prosecute many misdemeanors. A policy memo he distributed in his first year as Fairfax County's top prosecutor urged assistant commonwealth's attorneys to seek misdemeanor charges over felonies whenever appropriate. He has reportedly told his staff that they "will never get in trouble for prosecuting light." In one fraught meeting, Descano reportedly told one of his prosecutors to reduce a 20-year sentence by 5 years and to not "listen to victims" because they tend to be "overly dramatic."
In Fairfax, Virginians for Safe Communities has gathered more than half of the roughly 30,000 signatures necessary to trigger a special election.
"It is stunning that Steve Descano would cut loose a fentanyl-dealing gun felon after Kamara endangered the lives of the public and law enforcement," said Sean Kennedy, the president of Virginians for Safe Communities. "The citizens of Fairfax need to know that the single biggest threat to public safety is the chief prosecutor and his disregard for the laws and lives of this commonwealth."
Drug overdose deaths have risen nationwide since 2019, driven by new synthetic opioids like fentanyl, according to the CDC. The Drug Enforcement Administration reported synthetic opioid-related deaths shot up 56 percent from 2020 to 2021.
Fairfax County has yet to release its annual police report. Preliminary data show homicides were up 40 percent last year and are on pace to be higher in 2022.
Kamara is in the custody of the U.S. Marshals and being held without bond pending trial.
Update 7/14/2022 at 4:38 p.m.: This story has been updated with a comment from the Fairfax County commonwealth's attorney's office.