Men involved in cocaine trafficking scheme sent to prison.

August 31, 2017

Jaime Pina

Men involved in cocaine trafficking scheme sent to prison.

#OceanaCountyCrime

GRAND RAPIDS — A Texas man and two conspirators were recently sentenced to lengthy prison terms in federal court for trafficking cocaine in Oceana and Muskegon counties, according to a press issued by the US Attorney’s Office of the Western District of Michigan.

US District Judge Janet T. Neff sentenced Jaime Valente Pina, Jr. of Alamo, Texas to 87 months in prison for participating in a cocaine distribution conspiracy that operated in and around Muskegon and Oceana counties from the summer of 2015 until August 2016, according to Acting US Attorney Andrew Birge.

In addition to his prison term, the court sentenced Pina to three years of supervised release. He was convicted last May after a three-day jury trial.

Detective Richard Parmer of the Oceana County Sheriff’s Office played a key role in their apprehension, said Oceana County Sheriff

Angel Pina

Craig Mast. “Our detective, Rich Parmer, was directly responsible for a big portion of this arrest,” Mast said.

“The conspiracy began in the summer of 2015 when Magdaleno Rodriguez, a cocaine dealer operating in and around Oceana County, was introduced to Jaime Valente Pina, Jr. as a new source of supply for cocaine. Thereafter, Jaime Pina and his brother, Angel Pina, supplied cocaine to Rodriguez on a monthly basis for further redistribution throughout West Michigan. The Pina brothers are from the Rio Grande Valley – the southernmost tip of Texas – which shares an extensive stretch of border with Mexico.

“Throughout the conspiracy, they brought cocaine to Rodriguez from their Texas-based source of supply. The conspiracy ended in approximately August 2016 after officers of the State, Sheriffs, Chiefs, Enforcement Narcotics Team (SSCENT) concluded undercover buys from Rodriguez and executed a search warrant at his home. Officers of the West Michigan Enforcement Team (WEMET) apprehended the Pina brothers while executing a warrant at a drug house in Ravenna in November 2016.

Rodriguez

“Magdaleno Rodriguez and Angel Pina pleaded guilty prior to trial. Rodriguez and Angel Pina were sentenced in US District Court July 11, 2017. The Court sentenced Rodriguez to 98 months incarceration and four years of supervised release. Angel Pina received 109 months of incarceration and three years of supervised release.

“The interstate trafficking of controlled substances into the Western District of Michigan remains a key prosecution priority for my office,” stated Birge. “Controlled substances poison our communities and they impair and often destroy the potential of those who use them. Individuals involved with importing these toxic substances into the Western District of Michigan will be brought to justice.”

“The sentencing of this final defendant brings full resolution to this investigation and chokes off a drug tracking organization responsible for distributing cocaine in our communities,” said Steve Francis, HSI Detroit special agent in charge. “HSI will continue to use its vast resources to combat the spread of illegal drugs.”

“This is yet another great example of the cooperative law enforcement efforts that occur daily in West Michigan. The agencies involved in this case worked diligently to ensure justice was served,” stated Detective/First Lieutenant Andy Fias, the Section Commander of WEMET and SSCENT.

Homeland Security Investigations, an investigative arm of the Department of Homeland Security, led the investigation with the assistance of SSCENT and WEMET. SSCENT and WEMET are two state-managed multi-jurisdictional drug task forces. Assistant US attorneys Joel S. Fauson and Timothy P. VerHey prosecuted this case.

This story is copyrighted © 2017, all rights reserved by Media Group 31, LLC, PO Box 21, Scottville, MI 49454. No portion of this story or images may be reproduced in any way, including print or broadcast, without expressed written consent.

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