You are here

Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, September 9, 2016

Husband And Wife Sentenced In Heroin Smuggling Conspiracy At Attica Correctional Facility

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

BUFFALO, N.Y.—U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that U.S. District Court Judge Lawrence J. Vilardo sentenced Andres Martinez, 30, a citizen of the Dominican Republic and an inmate at Attica Correctional Facility, to 45 months in prison for his role in a conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, heroin and marijuana. The defendant’s wife, Elizabeth Camue Martinez, was sentenced to 34 months in prison for her role in the conspiracy.  

“Heroin laced with fentanyl is a deadly cocktail that is killing literally hundreds of people a year in our community,” said U.S. Attorney Hochul. “These defendants knew that an inmate at the Attica Correctional Facility had died of an overdose and still continued to distribute this dangerous drug. As WNY battles to bring an end to this tragic epidemic, law enforcement will continue to do its part to rid our streets - and our jails - of these drug dealers.”    

According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Meghan A. Tokash, who is handling the case, between April, 2013 and December 6, 2013, Elizabeth Camue-Martinez purchased heroin and smuggled it into the Attica Correctional Facility to give to her husband. Andres Martinez then sold the drugs to other prisoners while serving a sentence for another crime.

Though not directly attributable to the defendants, during the time of the conspiracy, there were three prisoner overdose deaths involving heroin and fentanyl in Attica. During their sentencings, Judge Vilardo stated that the defendants knew that a prisoner in Attica died of an overdose on September 16, 2013 yet continued to sell drugs until December 5, 2013. Martinez will be deported from the United States after he serves his sentence.

Co-defendant Jerome Tallington, who supplied the heroin to the couple, was convicted and will be sentenced on October 14, 2016.

The sentencings are the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge James J. Hunt, New York Field Office, the New York State Police, under the direction of Major Steven Nigrelli, the New York State Police Community Narcotics Enforcement Team (CNET), under the direction of Major Wayne C. Olson, the Erie County Sheriff’s Department, under the direction of Sheriff Timothy Howard, the Wyoming Country District Attorney’s Office, under the direction of Donald O’Geen, the Erie County District Attorney’s Office, under the direction of Michael Flaherty, and the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, under the direction of Acting Commissioner Anthony Annucci.

Updated September 12, 2016