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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, May 12, 2016

Two Buffalo Men Indicted On Heroin And Cocaine Charges

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

BUFFALO, N.Y.-U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. announced today that a federal grand jury has returned a 12-count superseding indictment charging Manuel Freire, a/k/a Barney, 34, and Jose Feliciano-Miranda, a/k/a Palomo, 35, both of Buffalo, NY, with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin and five kilograms or more of cocaine, possession with intent to distribute, and distribution of heroin, possession with intent to distribute, and distribution of cocaine, maintaining a drug-involved premises, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking crimes. The charges carry a minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum of life, and a $10,000,000 fine.
 
Assistant U.S. Attorney Wei Xiang, who is handling the case, stated that according to the indictment and previously filed complaints, law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Freire’s bakery at 247 Niagara Street in Buffalo on April 1, 2016.  Hidden inside a mixer were approximately 400 grams heroin and 600 grams of cocaine. 
 
Officers also executed a search warrant at Feliciano-Miranda’s residence and recovered a quantity of heroin and a loaded Glock firearm. A search of Feliciano-Miranda’s vehicle revealed a sophisticated hydraulic “trap” or hidden compartment that had been built into the cargo area.
 
The defendants were arraigned before U.S. Magistrate Judge H. Kenneth Schroeder, Jr. and are being detained.

The indictment 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 Sheriff Timothy Howard, the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Safe Streets Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Adam S. Cohen, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, under the direction of Inspector-in-Charge Shelly Binkowski. The task force includes representatives of the Amherst Police Department, the Buffalo Police Department the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Erie County Sheriff’s Department, the Hamburg Police Department, the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority Police, the New York State Police, the Town of Tonawanda Police Department, U.S. Border Patrol, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Office of Enforcement & Removal Operations.
 
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 May 13, 2016