February 13, 2018
Contact: Erin Mulvey
Phone Number: (212) 337-3900
Drug Interdiction Results In Guilty Plea
BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. and Special Agent in Charge James J. Hunt, U.S. Drug Enforcement (DEA), New York Division announced that Elisa Rivera Ortiz, 36, of Buffalo, New York, pleaded guilty, before U.S. District Judge Richard J. Arcara, to attempted possession, with intent to distribute, cocaine. The charges carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $1,000,000 fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael J. Adler, who is handling the case, stated that on April 8, 2017, United States Postal Inspectors intercepted a package that was addressed to the defendant. Inside, the Postal Inspectors found cocaine. On June 30, 2017, inspectors again intercepted a package addressed to the defendant. Once again, they found cocaine.
On July 6, 2017, a controlled delivery of a package containing sham cocaine and a monitoring device was made to the defendant’s Warren Avenue residence. Once the monitor alerted investigators with the DEA and USPIS that the package had been opened, they entered the residence and executed a search warrant. Ortiz attempted to run out the side door but was taken into custody.
During the search, investigators located drug packaging materials, a digital scale with suspected cocaine residue, and a small bag of marijuana. Ortiz’s son and three other minor children were in the residence at the time.
The plea is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration-Buffalo Resident Office and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.
Sentencing is scheduled for May 25, 2018, at 12:30 p.m. before Judge Arcara.