DENVER (CBS4) – A former Colorado state district court judge accused of interfering with a major drug bust has pleaded guilty to obstructing a federal task force investigation. Prosecutors say Ryan Kamada, age 41, of Windsor, learned about the investigation of a large-scale cocaine trafficking organization through his official capacity as a judge. They say Kamada told a friend about the investigation, and that friend tipped off one of the suspects.

Ryan Kamada (credit: CBS)

“While serving as the ‘on call’ judge one evening in April 2019, Kamada received a phone call from a task force officer who was seeking a search warrant related to the investigation into the drug trafficker,” investigators stated. “The task force officer pointed out to Kamada that he was associated with the drug trafficker on social media.”

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Investigators say Kamada recused himself from the case, but early the next morning, Kamada called a friend who had also known the drug trafficker since childhood. Kamada told his friend to stay away from the trafficker, and warned him that law enforcement was “watching” the drug trafficker’s house, car and phone.

The friend informed the drug trafficker about the investigation — and destroyed records of his communications with the drug trafficker.

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Kamada resigned from his job amid the investigation, and several women who had appeared in his court wanted their cases thrown out or re-heard.

His sentencing hearing is scheduled for Dec. 4.

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