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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 2, 2014

California Man Arrested on Drug and Money Laundering Charges

 

BUFFALO, N.Y.--U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that James Parish, 30, of Carlsbad, California, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with possession with intent to distribute marijuana, conspiracy to distribute marijuana and money laundering conspiracy. The charges carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.

     Assistant U.S. Attorney Frank T. Pimintel, who is handling the case, stated that according to the complaint, on August 21, 2014, the Drug Enforcement Administration seized a package that a person was attempting to ship at a local shipping company. The package contained $66,705 in United States currency. On that same date, the DEA seized a second package containing $77,000 in United States currency that was shipped to a shipping company in Carlsbad, California. An account belonging to the defendant was billed for each of the transactions.

     On September 18, 2014, Parish dropped off two large boxes at the shipping company in Carlsbad, CA to be shipped to the Buffalo area. On September 19, 2014, the boxes were seized by the DEA. According to the complaint, the boxes contained a total of 30 pounds of marijuana.

     On September 30, 2014, the defendant traveled from California to Buffalo to collect approximately $600,000 in payments for the marijuana. Parish was arrested at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport. According to the complaint, the defendant was planning to stay at a hotel on Genesee St. in Cheektowaga. The investigation revealed that Parish shipped a box to the hotel in his name. That box contained an AirSoft Gun, a taser, a bullet proof vest, a knife, handcuffs, a flashlight, a tourniquet strap, bandage kit and a GPS tracking device.   

     A second defendant in this case, Benjamin Golembiewski, 27, of Buffalo, NY, was arrested on September 26, 2014 and charged with conspiracy to distribute marijuana and money laundering. 

     Parish made an initial appearance this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeremiah J. McCarthy. He is being held pending a detention hearing on October 3, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. before U.S Magistrate Judge Hugh B. Scott.      

     The criminal complaint is the culmination of an investigation on the part of Special Agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of James J. Hunt, Acting Special Agent in Charge, New York Field Division and the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority Police, under the direction of Chief George Gast.   

     The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

 

Updated November 19, 2014