A man has been sentenced to spend the next ten years in prison after being found guilty of smuggling dozens of kilograms of cocaine concealed in tubs of butter into the United States and the Metro Atlanta area.
The man, Amos Christolin, also known as “Patizan,” 52, from Miami, was the final defendant in the case to be sentenced, according to U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Buchanan.
Before Christolin’s trial, Vital Joseph, 47, from Douglasville, and Jean Yves-Durogel, 48, from Port-au-Prince, Haiti, had already been sentenced in the same case.
According to court documents, on August 24, 2017, officers from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection in Miami conducted a border search of a shipment destined for the Metro Atlanta area from Haiti.
Authorities inspected the shipment and discovered 28 packages of white powder concealed within tubs of Haitian butter. Officials confirmed that the packages tested positive for cocaine and weighed 28 kilograms.
The investigation revealed that the shipment was intended for a business in Austell.
When authorities conducted a controlled delivery of the drugs to the business, they were met by Joseph, another defendant in the case.
According to court documents, Durogel was identified as the source of the drugs and had previously shipped at least four loads of cocaine hidden in butter from Haiti to Joseph in the United States.
Upon receiving the drugs, Joseph would then distribute them to individuals in the Miami area, who had been previously identified to him by Durogel.
One of the individuals that Joseph distributed to was identified as Christolin.
Throughout the investigation, agents determined that over 100 kilograms of cocaine had been shipped from Haiti to the United States. According to court documents, the value of the drugs would have been over $3 million.
“Together, we were able to prevent a substantial amount of drugs from reaching the streets. I’m proud to stand alongside our partner agencies as we work to stop these criminal enterprises that pollute our neighborhoods with their poison,” Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Acting Special Agent in Charge Travis Pickard, who is responsible for the states of Georgia and Alabama, made the following statement. “HSI will continue to work with our federal, state and local law enforcement partners to disrupt and dismantle these drug trafficking organizations and prevent them from flooding our communities with illicit drugs.”
Christolin received a 10-year prison sentence, along with five years of supervised release. Durogel was given a sentence of six years and eight months in prison, followed by five years of supervised release. Joseph’s sentence was six years and six months in prison, followed by five years of supervised release.