A federal grand jury returned an indictment on Wednesday against a group of defendants who are being charged in connection with a drug distribution ring with ties to Western New York.
U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. said four men have been arrested and charged with participating in a drug trafficking ring that stretched from Buffalo to California and involved cocaine, crack cocaine, and fentanyl being transported to the Buffalo area for distribution and sale.
Kennedy announced the return of an indictment charging 39-year-old David Washington - also known as “Dirty Dave,” “Dirt” and “Wavy Davey,” - and 50-year-old Eleazar Martinez Medina with conspiring to possess with intent to distribute, and distributing, 5 kilograms or more of cocaine. The charge carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, and a maximum of life in prison.
In addition, David Burgin, 47, and Rodney Pierce, 32, were arrested and charged by complaint with conspiring to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine. Burgin is also charged with maintaining a drug involved premises and possession of firearms in furtherance of drug trafficking crimes. If convicted, Pierce faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum of 40 years while Burgin faces a mandatory 10 years, and a maximum of life in prison.
During the course of the investigation, prosecutors said search warrants were executed at 12 residences, during which investigators seized six firearms, ammunition, a quantity of marijuana, more than 7½ kilos of suspected cocaine and crack cocaine, over 2 kilograms of fentanyl, over $750,000.00 in cash, six traps—many of which were hydraulically operated, scales, and drug packaging materials.
Washington was arraigned and is being held pending a detention hearing scheduled for today. Medina was arraigned in California and will be returned to the Western District of New York at a later date. Burgin and Pierce made initial appearances and were released on conditions.