Assiduous Probe Results in First Conviction of its Kind

Modified: October 31, 2014 2:05pm

10/3/2014

Erie County District Attorney Frank A. Sedita III announced that 33 year-old Eldin Collado of Queens, NY, has pleaded guilty to Attempted Promoting Prison Contraband in the First Degree before Erie County Court Judge Thomas P. Franczyk.

On June 14, 2014, while serving a sentence in Gowanda Correction Facility, Collado was found in possession of over two ounces of synthetic marijuana, more commonly known as “K2” or “Spice.”  The contraband was discovered in Corrado’s cell, as well as in latex balloons lodged in the groin and anus of the prisoner.

Synthetic marijuana has a high potential for abuse and no medical benefits.  The effects of using it include paranoia, hallucinations, severe agitation, brain damage and suicidal tendencies. Synthetic marijuana is a controlled substance under Federal Law and progressive states, like Mississippi and Arkansas, have banned the substance since 2010.

Largely unregulated in New York, synthetic marijuana nonetheless constitutes “dangerous contraband” in the prison context and this case--prosecuted by the Erie County District Attorney’s Office--marks the first successful prosecution for synthetic marijuana in New York.

Collado is currently serving a seven-year sentence for Armed Robbery and faces up to another 4 years in state prison when he is sentenced on January 5, 2015 at 2:00 pm by Judge Franczyk. 

The case was painstakingly investigated by Sgt. Kenneth LeBel of the State Department of Corrections and successfully prosecuted by Assistant District Michael P. Felicetta, Chief of DA Sedita’s Felony Trial Bureau.