WEST HARTFORD — A local man will spend seven years in federal prison for trafficking cocaine while on supervised release from a prior federal conviction, according to prosecutors.
U.S. District Judge Jeffrey A. Meyer on Thursday sentenced 51-year-old Manuel “Green-eyed Pete” Santiago, with a last known address in West Hartford, to spend 84 months behind bars, followed by five years of supervised release.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Santiago’s court appearance on Wednesday was via video conference.
In August 2019, investigators learned that Santiago was selling half-kilogram quantities of cocaine, authorities said.
“Investigators knew that Santiago had a history as a large-scale narcotics supplier and that he was on federal supervised release following his 2013 convictions,” on charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and money laundering, according to federal prosecutors.
Law enforcement officers set up a controlled purchase on Aug. 14, 2019, to buy half a kilogram of cocaine from Santiago, authorities said. He was arrested that night when he showed up with about 514 grams of cocaine, authorities said.
Santiago was taken into custody and has been detained since his arrest.
On Oct. 8, 2020, he pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine.