Parma man sentenced to 16 years in prison for leading cocaine conspiracy
A Parma man was sentenced to 16 years in prison for leading a cocaine conspiracy.
Gilbert Mendez, 40, previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, distribution of cocaine and related crimes.
Mendez obtained at large amounts of cocaine from suppliers. Mendez and co-conspirators then cooked the drug into crack cocaine, which they stored at stash houses on West 54th Street and Finn Avenue, according to court documents.
Mendez and others sold the drugs from an auto body shop on West 63rd Street and other locations, according to court documents.
This case was investigated by Northern Ohio Law Enforcement Task Force. The NOLETF is a task force comprised of investigators from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Cleveland Division of Police, Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority, Drug Enforcement Administration, Internal Revenue Service, Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Office, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and the police departments of Cleveland Heights, Euclid, Lakewood, the Regional Transit Authority, Westlake and Shaker Heights. The NOLETF is also one of the initial Ohio High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area initiatives, which supports and helps coordinate numerous Ohio drug task forces in their efforts to eliminate or reduce drug trafficking in Ohio.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michelle M. Baeppler, Margaret A. Sweeney and Patrick P. Burke.