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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Connecticut
Vanessa Roberts Avery, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Hartford Man Sentenced to 4 Years in Federal Prison for Drug Offense

NEW HAVEN, Conn. — Vanessa Roberts Avery, U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that Karlis Manson, 35, of Hartford, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey A. Meyer to 48 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for distributing controlled substances.

According to court documents and statements made in court, the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Hartford Task Force and Hartford Police Department conducted an investigation of a business located at 136 Barbour St. in Hartford that was suspected of trafficking narcotics. The business, a purported clothing store, had an awning that read “The HOLE Ex-Con 360 the movement.” In October 2022, investigators made two controlled purchases of marijuana from the store.

On Oct. 5, 2022, Manson and others were in the store when investigators conducted a court-authorized search of the store and seized quantities of suspected crack cocaine, psychedelic mushrooms, cocaine, marijuana, heroin, synthetic opioid films, fentanyl pills disguised as oxycodone, MDMA, drug packaging and processing materials, U.S. currency and five handguns. Manson, who was found in possession of distribution quantities of fentanyl and crack cocaine and approximately $1,000 in cash, was arrested at that time. After a K-9 alerted to the presence of narcotics in Manson’s vehicle, which was parked outside the store, a search of the vehicle revealed approximately 400 grams of cocaine, 10 pounds of marijuana and $8,200 in cash.

Also on Oct. 5, 2022, investigators searched a U-Haul storage facility in Plainville, which was rented under the name of a Manson relative, and found documents connected to Manson, a large duffle bag containing approximately 28 pounds of marijuana in vacuum-sealed bags, a suitcase containing approximately 12 pounds of marijuana in vacuum-sealed bags and approximately two pounds of phenacetin, which is used as a cutting agent for narcotics.

Investigators also seized a safe containing six firearms and a duffel bag containing approximately 25 pounds of marijuana, from a Vernon residence where Manson had stored the items.

On Sept. 7, Manson pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute controlled substances.

Manson, who is released on a $100,000 bond, is required to report to prison on January 17, 2024.

This investigation has been conducted by the DEA’s Hartford Task Force and the Hartford Police Department, with the assistance of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Connecticut Forensic Science Laboratory. The DEA Task Force includes personnel from the DEA Hartford Resident Office; the Connecticut State Police; and the Bristol, Hartford, East Hartford, Enfield, Manchester, New Britain, Rocky Hill, Wethersfield, and Windsor Locks Police Departments. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys A. Reed Durham and Brendan J. Keefe.


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