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Rochester man going to prison for cocaine conspiracy

STAFF REPORTS


ROCHESTER -- U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Manuel Medina, 33, of Rochester, who was convicted of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, 500 grams or more of cocaine, was sentenced to serve 46 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Katelyn Hartford, who handled the case, stated that between May 2018 and October 15, 2018, the defendant conspired with a co-conspirator to distribute cocaine in the Rochester area. 
On numerous occasions, Medina received packages, via the United States Postal Service, that had been sent from Puerto Rico to locations in Rochester, on behalf of the co-conspirator. The packages each contained approximately 500 grams of cocaine. The defendant would pick up the packages from various locations, at the direction of the co-conspirator, and then deliver them to the co-conspirator. Also in furtherance of the conspiracy, Medina distributed a quantity of cocaine to an individual in Rochester in August 2018.

In addition, the defendant assisted the co-conspirator by mailing packages containing United States currency to Puerto Rico as payment for the cocaine. On August 22, 2018, Medina and the co-conspirator purchased three electronic devices from Best Buy in which to secrete United States currency that would be mailed to Puerto Rico as payment for cocaine. That same day, the defendant shipped one of those devices, with $20,500 hidden inside, via the United States Postal Service, to Puerto Rico. That money was payment for approximately one kilogram of cocaine.

The sentencing is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Ray Donovan, New York Field Division, and the United States Postal Inspection Service, under the direction of Inspector-in-Charge Joseph W. Cronin of the Boston Division.

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