U.S. District Judge Max O. Cogburn Jr. today sentenced a methamphetamine dealer to 120 months in prison, announced Dena J. King, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina. Christian Allen Garcia, 30, of West Covina, California, was also ordered to serve five years of supervised release following his prison term.
Robert J. Murphy, Special Agent in Charge of the Atlanta Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), which oversees the Charlotte District Office, and Chief Johnny Jennings of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD) join U.S. Attorney King in making today’s announcement.
According to filed documents and statements made in court, in 2018, law enforcement identified Garcia as a member of a drug trafficking organization responsible for distributing bulk quantity of narcotics in Western North Carolina, including the greater Charlotte area. On March 27, 2018, law enforcement conducted a traffic stop of the vehicle where Garcia was a passenger and Garcia’s co-defendant, Henry Danny Collao, was the driver. Over the course of the traffic stop, law enforcement recovered nearly a kilogram of methamphetamine from the rear passenger seat. Law enforcement also found a loaded firearm in Garcia’s pants pocket and a second loaded gun in Collao’s right waistband. Officers also located within the vehicle different bank transaction receipts from various U.S. banks totaling over $75,000 in drug proceeds.
On July 8, 2021, Garcia pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. Collao was previously sentenced to 151 months in prison for his role in the drug trafficking scheme.
The investigation was handled by DEA and CMPD. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Hess of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Charlotte prosecuted the case.