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Press Release

Hartford Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Gang-Related Narcotics Trafficking

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Connecticut

Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that AKEEM MANOO, a.k.a. “Keeme,” 25, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Alker Meyer in New Haven to 120 months of imprisonment, followed by five years of supervised release, for gang-related narcotics trafficking.

According to court documents and statements made in court, this matter stems from a year-long joint law enforcement investigation headed by the FBI’s Northern Connecticut Violent Crimes Task Force, which includes the Hartford Police Department, into narcotics trafficking by members and associates of WestHell street gang, and gang-related violent activity.  The investigation, which included the use of court-authorized wiretaps, controlled purchases of narcotics and physical surveillance, identified Melkuan Scott, also known as “Young God,” “Mel,” “Young” and “YG,” as the leader of the WestHell street gang who, along with MANOO and other associates, distributed crack cocaine in the Westland Street area of Hartford.

In December 2014 and January 2015, investigators made four controlled purchases of crack from MANOO.  In addition, MANOO indicated to the drug purchaser that MANOO had kilogram quantities of crack available for $19,600 per kilogram.

MANOO’s criminal history includes two state firearms convictions.

MANOO has been detained since March 2014 when he was arrested on state motor vehicle charges.  On April 24, 2014, a grand jury returned a 52-count indictment charging Scott, MANOO and 23 others with various offenses.  On May 4, 2015, MANOO pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute 280 grams or more of cocaine base (“crack”).

Twenty-three defendants pleaded guilty to various offenses and one defendant was convicted after trial.  One defendant was shot and killed while his case was pending.

On March 21, 2016, Scott was sentenced to 13 years of imprisonment.

This matter has been investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Northern Connecticut Violent Crimes Task Force, Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Marshals Service and Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division.  The FBI Task Force includes members of the Hartford Police Department, East Hartford Police Department, Connecticut State Police and Connecticut Department of Correction.  The Hartford Police Department’s Vice and Narcotics Squad, Major Crimes Unit and Shooting Task Force are providing valuable assistance to the investigation, and the Capitol Region Emergency Response Team (CREST) assisted with the arrest of certain defendants.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys John H. Durham and Peter S. Jongbloed.

Updated March 24, 2016

Drug Trafficking