John H. Durham, United States Lawyer for the District of Connecticut, announced that SCOTT BODNAR, also recognized as “Pep,” 40, of Ansonia, was sentenced nowadays by U.S. District Judge Janet Bond Arterton in New Haven to 55 months of imprisonment, followed by 3 years of supervised release, for his involvement in a huge-scale marijuana trafficking conspiracy.
According to court documents and statements produced in court, in 2016, the Federal Aviation Administration started investigating a Piper single-engine aircraft, owned by Donald Burns of Milford, that was creating standard flights involving Stratford, Connecticut, and northern California by means of the southwest United States. On June 28, 2017, Burns flew the aircraft from northern California to Lubbock, Texas. The subsequent day, Burns flew the aircraft from Texas to Arkansas, and then to West Virginia and Connecticut, exactly where he landed in the evening at Sikorsky Airport in Stratford. Immediately after it landed, a law enforcement search of the plane revealed about 400 pounds of marijuana in vacuum-sealed packages, and Burns was arrested. Investigators determined that the marijuana was intended for Robert Capelli, Scott Bodnar, Terrell Givens and other individuals to distribute in Connecticut. Capelli and Bodnar had been arrested later that day.
The investigation revealed that, for additional than two years, Capelli and his associates earned millions of dollars by trafficking practically two tons of marijuana from California to Connecticut. Members of the conspiracy also laundered additional than $six million to acquire marijuana in California, preserve properties for distribution in Connecticut, spend Burns to transport the marijuana, and for other costs connected to the conspiracy.
On May possibly two, 2019, Bodnar pleaded guilty to 1 count of conspiracy to distribute, and to possess with intent to distribute, 1,000 kilograms or additional of marijuana, and 1 count of conspiracy to launder monetary instruments.
Judge Arterton also ordered Bodnar to forfeit his 2012 Toyota Camry, which was seized in the course of the investigation.
Bodnar, who is released on a $250,000 bond, is needed to report to prison on October 16, 2019.
On July 26, 2019, a jury located Capelli, of Milford, guilty of 1 count of conspiracy to distribute, and to possess with intent to distribute, 100 kilograms or additional of marijuana, and 1 count of possession with intent to distribute 100 kilograms or additional of marijuana. He was located not guilty of 1 count of conspiracy to launder monetary instruments, and 1 count of funds laundering. Capelli has forfeited about $90,000 to date, and added forfeiture proceedings are pending.
On May possibly three, 2019, Givens, of Beacon Falls, pleaded guilty to 1 count of conspiracy to distribute, and to possess with intent to distribute, 1,000 kilograms or additional of marijuana, and 1 count of conspiracy to launder monetary instruments. He also agreed to forfeit his 2009 Jaguar XF and about $eight,000 in jewelry.
On May possibly six, 2019, Burns, of Milford, pleaded guilty to 1 count of conspiracy to distribute, and to possess with intent to distribute, 1,000 kilograms or additional of marijuana. He also has agreed to forfeit the Piper aircraft.
Capelli, Givens and Burns await sentencing.
This matter has been investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Haven Job Force, the Federal Aviation Administration’s Law Enforcement Help System (LEAP), the Customs and Border Protection’s Air and Marine Operations Center, the Internal Income Service – Criminal Investigation Division, the U.S. Marshals Service, the Stratford, Derby and West Haven Police Departments, and the Second Judicial Drug Job Force in Jonesboro, Arkansas.
The case is becoming prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Rahul Kale and Marc Silverman.