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Buffalo couple arrested, charged with cocaine conspiracy

STAFF REPORTS

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Kayode Yard, a/k/a Eric Thomas, 44, and Arlynda Ray, 46, both of Buffalo , NY, were arrested and charged by criminal complaint with conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute, and to distribute, 500 grams or more of cocaine. The charge carries a mandatory minimum penalty of five years in prison, a maximum of 40 years and a $5,000,000 fine. 
Assistant U.S. Attorney Patricia Astorga, who is handling the case, stated that according to the complaint, Kayode Yard sold a quantity of suspected heroin to an individual working with the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Subsequently, on May 07, 2018, the New York State Police, while conducting routine patrol, stopped a 2018 Chevrolet Impala for vehicle and traffic violations on Interstate 90 in the Town of Glen, NY. This vehicle was being driven by defendant Ray and Yard was a passenger. During the traffic stop, the NYSP Trooper, a K9 handler, noticed the odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle and subsequently conducted an exterior search of the vehicle with his K9. The K9 alerted to the presence of a controlled substance emanating from the vehicle. A subsequent search of the vehicle led to the discovery of two kilogram-sized bricks containing a white powder substance in the trunk. Ray and Yard were immediately arrested. A field test of the substances seized from the vehicle indicated the presence of cocaine.
Yard and Ray made initial appearances before U.S Magistrate Judge H. Kenneth Schroeder. Yard is being detained. Ray was released on conditions. 
The complaint is the result of an investigation by the New York State Police, under the direction of Major Robert Patnaude; and the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge James J. Hunt, New York Field Division.
The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.