One of six defendants in a multimillion-dollar drug ring pleaded guilty and was sentenced in the York County Court of Common Pleas on Wednesday.
Luis Geronimo Ocampo, 52, of 2510 W. Market St., Apt. B, in West Manchester Township, was sentenced to five to 10 years in prison as part of a plea agreement that allowed him to plead guilty to 10 drug-related charges. One charge — possession with intent to deliver — was dropped, according to his court record.
Ocampo was credited with 481 days of time served, the record states.
Ocampo is one of six people, five of whom are from York County, who were allegedly involved in a cocaine-distribution ring that imported the drugs from Mexico in ordinary-looking packages shipped via Federal Express, authorities had said.
The ring: One such package contained a decorative lighted garden stone with a kilo of cocaine hidden inside. Also in the package were two electronic scales and faxed paperwork from Ocampo to a fax number in Mexico, the Attorney General's Office has said.
State agents seized more than 1,700 grams of cocaine, approximately $26,000, five vehicles and several La Santa Muerte statues, which have become known as the "narco patron saint," during the investigation, according the attorney general.
The statues are popular among drug cartels, which believe the saint will protect them from law enforcement and rival cartel members, the attorney general has said.
State officials uncovered the $4.8 million ring through an investigation known as "Operation Special Delivery."
The state Attorney General's Office prosecuted the case, said Kyle King, spokesman for the York County District Attorney's Office.
Co-defendants: Of the six accused participants in the ring, only two have outstanding cases.
According to court records, Jose Guadalupe Solorzano, 36, of 972 1/2 Carlisle St., Hanover, remains in York County Prison on combined $1.75 million bail. Fellow co-defendant Mercedes Manjarrez-Torres, 40, of 216 Penn St., Hanover also remains in prison on $750,000 bail, records state.
Including Ocampo, four co-defendants have pleaded guilty to drug charges in the case.
Eduardo Patino Avalos, 24, who shared an apartment with Ocampo, pleaded guilty to drug charges in January and was sentenced to three to six years, records state.
Sandra A. Valdez, 21, who also shared an apartment with Ocampo, pleaded no contest to conspiracy possession with intent to deliver in January and was sentenced to 276 days' time served. Her probation has been transferred to California, records state.
Luis Manuel Maldonado-Velasquez, 36, of 1036 Derry St., Harrisburg, was sentenced to three to six years in prison after pleading guilty in February.
— Reach Greg Gross at firstname.lastname@example.org.