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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Buffalo Man Pleads Guilty To Drug And Gun Charges

CONTACT:  Barbara Burns
PHONE:         (716) 843-5817
FAX #:            (716) 551-305

BUFFALO, N.Y.-Acting U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Jose Feliciano-Miranda, 36, of Buffalo, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford to: conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, heroin and cocaine: and possession of firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking crime.  The charges carry a minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum of life, and a $5,000,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Wei Xiang, who is handling the case, stated that between April 2015, and April 2016, co-defendant Manuel Freire coordinated the receipt, and subsequent distribution, of wholesale quantities of heroin and cocaine in Buffalo from sources in Puerto Rico and elsewhere. Feliciano-Miranda assisted Freire in both receiving and distributing the drugs.

On April 24, 2015, federal law enforcement officers intercepted a parcel that was mailed from Puerto Rico and destined for a residence on Hudson Street in Buffalo.  A half a kilogram of cocaine was hidden in speakers contained in the parcel. Two other co-conspirators, who, at Freire’s direction, went to retrieve the parcel were arrested. 

On May 7, 2015, federal law enforcement officers intercepted a parcel that was mailed from Puerto Rico and destined for a residence on Manhattan Avenue in Buffalo.  Once again, cocaine (one kilogram) was hidden in speakers in the parcel. However, Manuel Freire noticed what he believed to be police surveillance and the package was not retrieved.

In early 2016, Feliciano-Miranda and Freire began selling heroin out of 247 Niagara Street in Buffalo. A search warrant was executed on April 1, 2016, and officers recovered a kilogram of heroin that Freire had stored there. Another search warrant was executed at a residence on Byrd Way, which led to the recovery of a loaded firearm. 

Manuel Freire has been convicted and is awaiting sentencing.

The plea is the result of an investigation by the Buffalo Police Department, under the direction of Commissioner Daniel Derenda; the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge James J. Hunt, New York Field Division; the Erie County Sheriff’s Office, under the direction of Timothy Howard; the Federal Bureau of Investigation Safe Streets Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Adam S. Cohen; and the United States Postal Inspection Service, under the direction of Boston Division Inspector-in-Charge Shelly A. Binkowski.

Sentencing is scheduled for December 12, 2017, before Judge Wolford.

Updated August 29, 2017