Area Men Indicted On Federal Charges

BUFFALO — Two area men have been indicted by a federal grand jury on narcotics conspiracy and possession charges.

U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy Jr. on Monday announced the indictment against 32-year-old Brandon Smith and 34-year-old Mark R. Maio for narcotics conspiracy and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and marijuana. Maio was also charged with using and maintaining a drug-involved premises, and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine on premises where an individual under 18 was present and resided, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

“Today we unveil a new weapon which we deploy as part of our effort to protect our community from the scourge that methamphetamine trafficking brings to it,” Kennedy said. “This indictment marks the first time that any person in the Western District of New York has been charged with violating Title 21, United States Code, Section 860a, which requires that the sentencing court impose a mandatory, additional, consecutive term of up to 20 years in prison, whenever a methamphetamine-related drug offenses occurs on a premises at which a child is present. While we have directed much of our recent law enforcement effort to combating deadly opioids, methamphetamine — though it may be a slower death — also kills. When it comes to protecting our community, new threats warrant new responses.”

According to the indictment and a previously filed complaint, beginning in March 2018, the Jamestown Police Department Narcotics Unit began investigating Maio and Smith for the distribution of methamphetamine in and around the city of Jamestown. The investigation included controlled purchases of narcotics from Maio.

On Jan. 23, the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force executed a state search warrant at Maio’s residence on Main Street in East Randolph. Maio and Smith were present at the time, along with two other adults and three minor children. Smith attempted to leave the residence but was detained and searched. Investigators recovered suspected crystal methamphetamine on Smith. They also searched Maio and recovered suspected crack cocaine and a large amount of cash.

During a search of the residence, investigators recovered suspected marijuana, crystal methamphetamine, a digital scale, and other drug packaging and paraphernalia.

Both were arraigned Monday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael J. Roemer and detained.

If convicted, both face a mandatory minimum penalties of 10 years in prison, a maximum of life in prison, and a $10 million fine.