A report was released last weekend that cleared an anti-drug task force of any wrongdoing after a young informant they recruited over $80 worth of pot turned up dead last June.
Andrew Sadek, a 20-year-old student at the North Dakota State College of Science in Wahpeton, was brought on as an informant for the Southeast Multi-County Agency Drug Task Force (SEMCA) after he was arrested for selling marijuana on campus in 2013. He was following the trend of many other young drug offenders who opted to do dangerous undercover work for which they were not qualified instead of facing the harsh penalties for breaking drug laws, including the case of a Florida college student who was found murdered after agreeing to purchase several illicit drugs and a gun.
According to Reason.com, criminal investigators bought marijuana from Sadek on two seperate occasions. Due to this, Sadek faced up to 20 years in prison because the sales occurred in a school zone.
Ironically, he was caught through the use of one of SEMCA's informants. Agreeing to take part in the effort to stop drug sales, he went on to buy marijuana from two dealers at his school on three occasions from Novermber 2013 to January 2014 under the guidence of SEMCA.
Sadek purchased an eighth of an ounce of pot for $60 each time. According to a report made by criminal investigators, the student only had to purchase the drug from two more dealers in order to "fulfill his obligation in resolving the charges he had been facing."
However, Sadek disappeared and would never complete the case. He was reported missing later that summer.
According to the report, he stopped communicating with SEMCA altogether, which automatically charged him with two felonies and a misdemeanor on May 9.
On June 27, his body was discoverd in the Red River near Breckenridge, Minnesota. He had a gunshot wound to his head.
North Dakota Police Chief Scott Thorsteinson told reporters at the Grand Forks Herald that he "was gratified to see an independent review indicate [that SEMCA conducts themselves appropriately]."
He conceded that police informants work in "a dangerous subculture" but insisted that officers "bend over backwards to protect their [informants]."
However, Sadek's mother, Tammy Sadek, called for an investigation of SEMCA's methods and called into question how they conducted their actions.
"He was murdered," she told local radio station KFGO, "and this report actually reinforces that in our minds. We know that, and we know they're not even looking at anything ... Did somebody he was trying to get for them do it? Or somebody he already got?"
She went on to warn of SEMCA's actions against convicted students.
"SEMCA is alive and well on campus," she stated. "They're still using kids ... They're not protecting these kids."