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Press Release

California Man Pleads Guilty To Selling Methamphetamine

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of New York

CONTACT: Barbara Burns
PHONE: (716) 843-5817
FAX #: (716) 551-3051

BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that James H. Bess, Jr., 63, of Apple Valley, CA, pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael J. Roemer to possession with intent to distribute of five grams or more of methamphetamine. The charge carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum of life, and an $8,000,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura A. Higgins, who is handling the case, stated that on October 2, 2016, law enforcement officers conducted a controlled purchase with the defendant. During the buy, which took place inside Bess’s vehicle, the defendant sold a quantity of methamphetamine to another individual in exchange for $800 cash. Bess was arrested at that time.

During a search of the defendant’s vehicle, officers recovered three bags of methamphetamine. Officers also searched a room at the Red Roof Inn in the Town of Ellicott, which Bess had previously rented. During that search, officers recovered two additional bags of methamphetamine. 

The plea is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge James J. Hunt.

Sentencing will be scheduled at a later date.

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Updated October 5, 2018