New York Man Sentenced to 10 Years for Drug and Gun Crimes
Burlington, VT – The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that yesterday Tiante Branch, 32, of Troy, New York, was sentenced to 120 months imprisonment on his guilty pleas to charges of possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime in Rutland during February 12-13, 2012. Chief United States District Judge Christina Reiss also ordered Branch to serve three years supervised release after his term of imprisonment ends.
According to court records, troopers from the Vermont State Police Rutland Barracks used a confidential informant to make a controlled purchase of crack from Branch during the evening of February 12, 2012. Troopers then obtained and executed shortly after midnight on February 13 a state search warrant for a hotel room occupied by Branch, Quincy Collins, 32, of Troy, New York, and a third person. During the search troopers seized crack, powder cocaine, heroin, several thousand dollars in cash, scales, and a loaded and chambered pistol. Arrested that morning, Branch and Collins were charged in Vermont Superior Court with drug crimes, which were dismissed after federal charges were filed. Co-defendant Collins has entered a guilty plea to a charge of possession with intent to distribute crack, powder cocaine, and heroin, and is scheduled for sentencing on February 21, 2013.
United States Attorney Coffin commended the investigation by the Vermont State Police Rutland Barracks and thanked Rutland County State's Attorney Marc Brierre for his assistance and cooperation. Burlington attorney Ernest Allen III represented Branch. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig Nolan of the Rutland Branch of the United States Attorney's Office.