Tuesday, October 4, 2016


Buffalo, N.Y. -- U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Bradley J. Hollenbeck, 36, of Andover, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Court Judge Lawrence J. Vilardo to conspiracy to manufacture, possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, 50 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing methamphetamine.  The charge carries a minimum penalty of five years in prison, a maximum of 20, and a $5,000,000 fine. Assistant U.S. Attorney Brendan T. Cullinane, who is handling the case, stated that between January 2011 and late 2014, the defendant engaged in the practice of “smurfing,” buying small quantities of pseudoephedrine, at local pharmacies. Hollenbeck did so to get around restrictions on purchasing products containing pseudoephedrine. This is the most important chemical necessary in the process of manufacturing methamphetamine. The conviction is the culmination of an investigation on the part of the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge James J. Hunt, New York Field Division, the New York State Police Community Narcotics Enforcement Team (CNET), under the direction of Lieutenant Kevin Reyes and Major David Krause, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge Charlie J. Patterson, New York Division, the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force, under the direction of Cattaraugus County Sheriff Timothy Whitcomb, the Wellsville Police Department, under the direction of Chief Timothy O’Grady, U.S. Border Patrol, under the direction of Patrol Agent in Charge Steven Oldman, and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, under the direction of Captain Frank Lauricella. Sentencing is scheduled for January 17, 2016, before Judge Vilardo.