PORTLAND — A federal judge gave a Massachusetts man three years of probation for his part in buying pot from a Lewiston dealer and intending to distribute it.

Steven Gallucci, 23, appeared Thursday in U.S. District Court where a judge imposed the prison-free sentence for the Class D felony, which was punishable by up to five years behind bars. He pleaded guilty to the charge in June 2019.

The judge also fined Gallucci $3,000.

Prosecutors said Gallucci visited the home of Richard “Stitch” Daniels on Sabattus Street in Lewiston on Feb. 8, 2018, where he arrived in the early afternoon in a Subaru registered in Massachusetts.

Authorities followed the car down the Maine Turnpike into New Hampshire where a New Hampshire State Police trooper pulled it over. Gallucci told the officer he had come from Portland after visiting a friend. During a search of the car, the trooper seized a pizza box that contained marijuana concentrate as well as two vacuum-sealed bags and two large sealable plastic bags of processed marijuana, according to court papers.

The trooper also seized more than $10,000 in cash during the stop. Gallucci was the only occupant of the car.

The large amount of marijuana seized was consistent with “further distribution and inconsistent with personal use,” Assistant U.S. Attorney wrote in court papers.

Earlier this week, the same federal judge sentenced a 54-year-old Massachusetts man to six months in prison on the same charge after having been convicted twice before. Like Gallucci, that man had bought marijuana from Daniels and was pulled over on the highway in New Hampshire on his way back to his home state.

Daniels, 54, pleaded guilty in November to drug charges stemming from a federal raid where agents executed search warrants at more than 20 locations in and around the Twin Cities that resulted in the grand jury indictment of more than a dozen defendants.

Daniels faces from five to 40 years in prison for the felony of conspiracy to manufacture, distribute and possess with intent to distribute 100 or more marijuana plants and 100 or more kilograms of marijuana.

Prosecutors said the aim of that raid was to bust a medical marijuana growing operation that for more than two years had illegally sold surplus pot and derivatives, according to federal prosecutors who alleged that a broad drug-trafficking organization grew and distributed large amounts of marijuana under the guise of — but in violation of — Maine’s medical marijuana program in the Twin Cities area. The organization sold marijuana to buyers who were not participants in the program and included out-of-state customers, according to prosecutors.

In a pre-sentencing memorandum, Gallucci’s attorney, Gail Latouof, wrote that her client lives with his parents, works full-time, was a high school honor student and Boy Scout.

Federal drug agents visit a home on Sabattus Street in Lewiston in February 2018 in connection with a marijuana distribution and manufacturing investigation. Christopher Williams/Sun Journal file photo


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