ATF

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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

For Immediate Release

October 15, 2010

B. Todd Jones, United States Attorney

Contact: Jeanne F. Cooney
Director of Community Relations
(612) 664-5611
jeanne.cooney@usdoj.gov

Four Indicted for Conspiring to Distribute Methamphetamine, Oxycodone

A federal indictment unsealed earlier today in the District of Minnesota alleges that four men have been conspiring to distribute methamphetamine and oxycodone in Minnesota for the past two years. Noel Gutierrez Manzanares, age 37, no known address; Randy Lee Motzko, age 42, of Hilltop, Minnesota; and Robert Garcia, age 41, and Karl James Pentz, age 48, both of Aitkin, Minnesota, were charged with one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute controlled substances, namely methamphetamine and oxycodone.

Manzanares also was charged with one count of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and four counts of distribution of methamphetamine. In addition, Motzko and Garcia were charged with one count of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, while Pentz was also charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm. The indictment, which was originally filed on October 5, 2010, was unsealed following the defendants’ initial appearance in federal court.

Allegedly, from January 1, 2008, through September 29, 2010, the defendants conspired to distribute oxycodone and 500 or more grams of methamphetamine. The indictment also alleges that Manzanares distributed 50 or more grams of methamphetamine on June 25, August 17, August 25, and September 14, 2010; while on June 24, 2010, Manzanares, Motzko, and Garcia allegedly possessed with intent to distribute 320 grams of methamphetamine.

According to the indictment, Pentz possessed several firearms on July 31, 2008, including an AK-47 rifle, numerous rifles and handguns. Because Pentz is a felon, he is prohibited under federal law from possessing firearms at any time. Pentz’s prior felon convictions include thirddegree possession of narcotics in Anoka County in 2002, fifth-degree possession of narcotics in Sherburne County in 2002, and fifth-degree possession of narcotics in Aitkin County in 2008.

If convicted, the defendants face a potential maximum penalty of life in prison on the conspiracy charge. Manzanares, Motzko, and Garcia also face a potential maximum penalty of life in prison on the possession with intent to distribute charge. Moreover, Manzanares faces a potential maximum penalty of 40 years on each distribution count, while Pentz faces a potential maximum penalty of ten years on the firearms possession charge. All sentences will be determined by a federal district court judge.

This case is the result of an investigation by the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations, the Aitkin County Sheriff’s Office, the Mille Lacs County Sheriff’s Office, the Breezy Point Police Department, the Kanabec County Sheriff’s Office, the Isanti County Sheriff’s Office, the Mille Lacs Tribal Police Department, the Crow Wing County Sheriff’s Office and the Lakes Area Drug Investigation Division. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Christian S. Wilton.

An indictment is a determination by a grand jury that there is probable cause to believe that offenses have beencommitted by a defendant. A defendant, of course, is presumed innocent until he or she pleads guilty or is provenguilty at trial.

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