NEWARK, N.J. – An Elizabeth man was sentenced today, January 26, in Newark Federal Court to more than five years in prison for attempting to smuggle approximately three kilograms of cocaine from Haiti into the United States.
Schirmer Monestime, 39, was convicted on one count of conspiracy to distribute cocaine following a four-day trial before U.S. District Judge Susan D. Wigenton. He was arrested on March 5, 2013.
The investigation began on Feb 28, 2013, when conducting routine examinations of express mail parcels arriving from Haiti, law enforcement examined a parcel addressed to Bobby Lewis, 59, of Elizabeth. It revealed a package containing six large picture frames filled with cocaine, weighing approximately three kilograms. Law enforcement officers replaced the drugs with fake cocaine, then delivered it to Lewis.
A surveillance team observed Lewis taking the parcel to a nearby parking lot and signaling an approaching vehicle driven by Monestime, who did not stop, but later admitted that he intended to do.
In addition to the prison term, Monestime was sentenced to three years of supervised release.
Charges against Lewis are still pending. The charges and allegations against him are merely accusations, and he is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.