News Release
February 26, 2010
Contact: Casey McEnry
Number: 415-436-7994

Canadian Citizen Sentenced to Eight and One Half Years in Prison for Trafficking MDMA

FEB 26 -- SAN FRANCISCO – United States Attorney Joseph P. Russoniello and Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Anthony D. Williams announced that Henoke Teclechaimanot was sentenced to eight and one half years in prison yesterday for his role in a large-scale narcotics conspiracy.

On Nov. 3, 2009, Teclechaimanot, a Canadian citizen, pled guilty to conspiring to distribute MDMA (ecstasy).   In pleading guilty, Teclechaimanot admitted that he flew from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, to San Francisco on May 20, 2008, in order to supervise a narcotics exchange involving 148,956 ecstasy pills and 18 kilograms of cocaine.  On May 21, 2008, Teclechaimanot was stopped by the San Mateo Sheriff’s Department while he was a passenger in a rental car.  The San Mateo County Sheriff’s Department later located two suitcases containing 148,956 ecstasy pills inside the trunk of Teclechaimanot’s vehicle.  In entering his guilty plea before United States District Judge William H. Alsup, Teclechaimanot admitted that he knew the ecstasy pills were in the trunk of the vehicle. 

The sentence handed down by Judge Alsup also included a three-year period of supervised release. 

Aaron Wegner is the Assistant U.S. Attorney prosecuting the case, with the assistance of Erica Doerr and Jacquelyn Lovrin.  The prosecution is the result of an investigation led by agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).  The investigation was conducted and funded by the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF), a multi-agency task force that coordinates long-term narcotics trafficking investigations.