Two Jamaican men plead guilty to cocaine distribution scheme in the USSaturday, July 24, 2021
GEORGIA, United States — Two Jamaican men have pleaded guilty to federal charges in the United States after a routine traffic stop led to the discovery that were participants in a "cocaine-distribution scheme" between Jamaica and New York.
Avon Shuttleworth, alias 'Havan', 46, of Rosedale, New York, pleaded guilty in the US District Court in the Southern District of Georgia to possession with intent to distribute cocaine.
The other man, Courtnay Anthony Drummond, 52, of Brunswick, Georgia, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute cocaine.
Drummond is a native of Jamaica and a legal resident of the United States, while Shuttleworth is a citizen of Jamaica, a statement from the US Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Georgia said on Friday.
"The pleas subject the defendants to statutory sentences of five to 40 years in federal prison, along with substantial financial penalties, followed by a period of supervised release," the statement said, adding that "There is no parole in the federal system."
The date for the sentencing of the Jamaicans was not disclosed.
It was reported that agents with the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) led by agents from the Savannah Resident Office, initiated a probe of cocaine trafficking from Jamaica into the New York City area in March 2020.
According to court documents and testimony, Drummond met with Shuttleworth and another conspirator on March 14, 2020.
During the meeting at Shuttleworth's home in New York, "Drummond agreed to deliver two kilograms of cocaine to a buyer in Baltimore," the US Attorney's Office said.
While on his journey to deliver the illicit drug, Drummond was pulled over by a Georgia State Patrol trooper for "tailgating another vehicle" on Marcn 15, 2020.
A search of the vehicle by troopers led to the discovery of the two kilogram bricks of cocaine.
"Drummond told investigators that he had been unable to contact the Maryland buyer and was headed to his then-home in Riviera Beach, Florida," the statement said.
Federal agents later used a warrant to search Shuttleworth's New York home, resulting in the discovery of a ledger detailing drug transactions, as well as a large press used to make kilo-sized drug bricks.
"This traffic stop led to the seizure of almost five pounds of cocaine, ensuring this dangerous and potentially deadly drug never reached the seller, and more importantly, the consumer," said Robert J Murphy, special agent in charge of the DEA Atlanta Field Division.
For his part, acting US Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia, David H Estes, said: "It's truly incredible how so many elaborate criminal schemes fall apart because of a simple traffic violation."
He added: "Thanks to an alert Georgia State Patrol trooper and outstanding work from our law enforcement partners, an operation that moved kilos of illegal drugs in the northeastern United States has been brought to a halt."
The case is being prosecuted for the United States by Assistant US Attorney Jennifer G. Solari.
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