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Press Release

North Dakota Man Pleads Guilty To Distribution Of A Controlled Substance

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

United States Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Ricardo Avila, age 53, of North Dakota, appeared before U.S. District Judge Roberto A. Lange on August 19, 2013, and pled guilty to Count I of the Indictment that charged him with Distribution of a Controlled Substance. 

The maximum penalty upon conviction is 20 years of imprisonment, a $1,000,000 fine, or both; at least 3 years of supervised release and an additional 2 years of supervised release upon revocation; and a $100 special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund.  Restitution may also be ordered. 

An undercover officer connected with the Northern Plains Safe Trails Drug Enforcement Task Force was introduced to Avila and arranged a purchase of cocaine from him.  On April 12, 2012, Avila delivered to the undercover officer a substance that testing confirmed was 28.3 grams of powder cocaine, a Schedule II controlled substance. 

The investigation was conducted by the Northern Plains Safe Trails Drug Enforcement Task Force. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kathryn N. Rich is prosecuting the case. 

Avila was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service pending sentencing, which has been set for November 18, 2013.

Updated June 22, 2015