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Crime and Courts

Former Weld County judge who tipped off friend about drug investigation sentenced to a year in prison

Former Judge Ryan Kamada tipped off his friend about the investigation after officers asked him to sign a search warrant

A former Weld County District Judge who tipped off a friend that a mutual acquaintance was the target of a federal drug investigation has been sentenced to a year and a day in prison.

U.S. District Court Judge William Martinez sentenced 42-year-old Ryan Kamada on Wednesday, The Greeley Tribune reported. Kamada was also sentenced to two years of probation upon his release.

Kamada had pleaded guilty to a federal felony charge of obstructing an investigation by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the FBI and the Weld County Drug Task Force.

He tipped off his friend in 2019 after learning about the investigation when officers asked him to sign a search warrant. He warned the friend via text to stay away from the acquaintance because of the investigation. The friend then tipped off the acquaintance.

Both men were later arrested as part of the drug investigation, which resulted the indictment of 19 people.


Kamada resigned in August 2019. He was censured in 2020 by the Colorado Supreme Court. According to the censure, Kamada frequently texted his friends inappropriate comments about what was happening in his courtroom.

“I’m ashamed of what I’ve done and all the ethics I’ve violated,” he said at Wednesday’s sentencing hearing.

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