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Dunkirk men indicted on drug charges


BUFFALO -- A federal grand jury has returned a six count indictment charging Fred A. Santiago, 29, and Michael Pacheco, 27, both of Dunkirk, with conspiracy to distribute and distribution of five or more kilograms of cocaine, possession with intent to distribute and distribution of cocaine, and maintaining a drug premise. The charges carry a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years, a maximum of life and a $1,000,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Meghan A. Tokash, who is handling the case, stated that according to the indictment, on May 2, 2017, a state search warrant was executed at Santiago’s residence. Law enforcement officers seized scales, a heat sealer, heat sealing bags, a drug press, and over 600 grams of suspected cocaine. On the same day, members of the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force stopped Pacheco’s vehicle and seized an amount of cocaine that was secreted away inside a potato chip bag.

The defendants were arraigned today before the U.S. Magistrate Judge H. Kenneth Schroeder, Jr. and are being held pending detention hearings on June 2, 2017 at 11:45 a.m.

The indictment is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge James J. hunt, new York Field Division, the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force, under the direction of Cattaraugus County Sheriff Timothy Whitcomb, and the Dunkirk Police Department, under the direction of Chief David Ortolano.