Transient arrested in attempt to receive pot shipped to post office

Posted Aug. 20, 2009, at 7:30 p.m.

NEWPORT, Maine — A transient who attempted to have marijuana sent to him through the mail last week was arrested by Maine Drug Enforcement Agency agents when he picked up the suspect package.

Manuel Vasquez-Rosa, 33, was arrested at 7 p.m., Friday, Aug. 14, at a Newport residence and charged with trafficking in marijuana, a Class C crime.

Someone at the U.S. post office alerted the MDEA about a suspect package that had arrived in the state from Texas, Garry Higgins, MDEA supervisory special agent for the Bangor-based North Central Regional Taskforce, said Thursday.

“It was intercepted by the postal service and we were told it was being delivered to Newport,” he said.

Working in partnership with the post office, the package was delivered and Vasquez-Rosa was arrested.

“Eight and a half pounds of pot was recovered,” Higgins said.

Because the post office was used to deliver the drugs, Vasquez-Rosa possibly could face additional federal charges, Higgins said.

After his arrest, Vasquez-Rosa was taken to Penobscot County Jail and was released Monday, a jail official said.

If Vasquez-Rosa is convicted of the crime, he could face a penalty of up to five years in jail and a fine of up to $5,000.

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