Comments Off on Colorado woman waives preliminary hearing

PLYMOUTH — A Colorado woman accused of trying to sell a Montgomery County undercover narcotics officer a pound of methamphetamine that she and her boyfriend allegedly smuggled in on a private plane from Las Vegas waived her preliminary hearing.

Tamara Vincent, 41, of Rifle, Colo., who appeared briefly before District Judge Francis J. Bernhardt on Tuesday, was arrested along with 51-year-old James Handzus, the plane’s pilot, during a drug sting on Friday, April 22, the day after the couple arrived at Wings Field in a blue 1959 Piper Comanche with the high-grade meth, according to the DA’s Office.

Vincent is charged with drug trafficking and criminal use of a communications facility. Handzus’ hearing was rescheduled for May 24 at 11:45 a.m. in Bernhardt’s court.

During the undercover cop’s first phone conversation with Handzus that Friday, the Colorado man was apprehensive about talking on the phone and suggested the prospective buyer and he purchase “go phones” to communicate, meaning prepaid cell phones.

On Friday afternoon, Handzus and Vincent met the officer at Ruby Tuesday’s on Chemical Road in Plymouth Township at 3:21 p.m. accompanied by another woman.

Vincent explained that her boyfriend had family in the area, and when the couple visited they brought drugs to sell to pay their travel expenses, according to court papers. They claimed to have stopped in Las Vegas to get the drug.

When the officer asked Handzus price of the a whole pound of the narcotic, he pointed to Vincent saying, “That’s her thing.”

Vincent told the undercover officer the selling price for the meth as $27,000. During the discussion, she suggested to the “dealer” that he could divide the substance up into eighths of an ounce, called “eight balls,” and sell them on the street for between $500 to $600 each and make between $64,000 and $76,800.

She also said he would get a break on the wholesale price if he purchased quantities of at least five pounds in the future, according to prosecutors.

After inspecting a sample of the methamphetamine in the restaurant’s mens room, the couple told the undercover policeman the drug was in luggage inside a white Hyundai parked in the eatery’s lot. The officer then paid Vincent a $2,000 downpayment, promising to pay the balance when they arrived at a nearby hotel, and after taking the money, she put the cash in her pocket.

The couple then requested that the man posing as a dealer take their luggage from the car and drive them to the hotel. Once in their room, the couple agreed to give the officer the meth.

As the luggage was being put into the officer’s vehicle, narcotics officers moved in and arrested Handzus and Vincent.

Both are being held in Montgomery County Correctional Facility on $500,000 bail each. Vincent is scheduled to be arraigned in the Court of Common Pleas June 15.

http://timesherald.com/articles/2011/05/03/news/doc4dc0815ba1f64600811256.txt

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