MANCHESTER MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO CONSPIRACY TO DISTRIBUTE MORE THAN 100 KILOGRAMS OF MARIJUANA
CONCORD, NH: Nicholas Champagne, of Manchester, New Hampshire, plead guilty to Conspiracy to Distribute more than 100 kilograms of Marijuana and is scheduled to be sentenced on October 14, 2010 in the United States District Court. Champagne faces a statutory minimum sentence of 5 years and a statutory maximum sentence of 40 years. Under the terms of a plea agreement, he is to be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of not less than five years and not more than 10 years announced United States Attorney John P. Kacavas. Champagne is being detained pending sentencing
An investigation revealed that a Canadian organization was using Canadian couriers to carry marijuana into the United States for distribution. On December 23, 2008, DEA agents observed co-conspirators travel to Home Depot in Salem, NH and purchase cardboard boxes. The agents conducted surveillance and followed the co-conspirators to a warehouse where they were observed meeting with a Canadian tractor trailer. The agents observed the co-conspirators loading two vehicles with cardboard boxes. One co-conspirator was subsequently stopped in Massachusetts where agents found approximately 200 pounds of marijuana inside a large cardboard box labeled “Home Depot.” The second vehicle was followed to Champagne’s residence. A few days later, Champagne was observed helping a man move a large Home Depot box from the residence. On April 4, 2009, DEA agents conducted surveillance on a co-conspirator and observed the defendant hand a co-conspirator $194,090 in illegal drug proceeds.
The investigation in this case was led by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Manchester Police Department and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Debra M. Walsh.