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Attempted Production of Methamphetamine in Hinesburg Leads to Federal Arrest and Charge

OCT 31 (BURLINGTON, Vt.) - John J. Arvanitis, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and Tristram J. Coffin United States Attorney for the District of Vermont announced that Jacob Berino, 19, of Hinesburg was arrested yesterday and presented today in United States District Court for an initial appearance on a complaint charging Berino with attempted production of methamphetamine on October 23, 2012. United States Magistrate Judge John M. Conroy ordered Berino detained pending admission to a residential substance abuse treatment facility.

According to court records, on October 23, 2012, E-911 received a call indicating that Berino had been injured in an explosion at the Hinesburg residence of his father. A Hinesburg officer responded and found Berino spraying water on his face, which appeared to have been burned. The officer observed items consistent with the illicit production of methamphetamine, a Schedule II controlled substance. Berino was transported to Fletcher Allen Health Care. Officers and agents of the Hinesburg Police Department (HPD), Vermont State Police (VSP), and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) secured the residence. On October 24, 2012, the DEA New England Field Division Clandestine Laboratory Enforcement Team, DEA agents, VSP troopers, and HPD officers executed a search warrant at the residence, finding evidence consistent with an explosion during the attempted manufacture of methamphetamine.

Upon his discharge from Fletcher Allen on October 30, 2012, Berino was arrested by DEA agents.

If convicted of the crime charged in the criminal complaint, Berino faces a potential sentence of up to 20 years in prison. Any actual sentence will be determined by the sentencing court in accordance with the advisory federal sentencing guidelines and federal law. United States Attorney Tristram J. Coffin cautioned that a criminal complaint is only a method of bringing charges and is not proof of guilt. He noted that Berino is presumed innocent until proven guilty in court. U.S. Attorney Coffin commended the investigation by DEA, VSP and HPD Task Force.


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