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Amherst man pleads guilty in drug conspiracy

An Amherst man faces a maximum 20 years in prison after pleading guilty to drug charges in U.S. District Court.

Rohan Chopra, 22,  pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, MDMA, also known as “Molly.”

Two other men, Connor Dempsey and Joel Jacob, agreed to allow Chopra to store various controlled substances in an apartment Dempsey and Jacob rented at 365 Campus Drive in Buffalo,  according to the U.S. Attorney's office. Chopra also was allowed to sell drugs out of the apartment.

Dempsey and Jacob gave Chopra keys to the apartment so that he could access and distribute the drugs stored in the apartment.

Chopra also ordered controlled substances from the internet and had them delivered to the apartment, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney Patricia Astorga. Chopra instructed Dempsey and Jacob not to sign for packages and to deny that they were expecting a package to avoid liability, Astorga said.

Jacob, on Aug. 17, 2016, signed for a parcel addressed to him, which turned out to be a controlled delivery by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. The package, which Chopra ordered over the internet using bitcoins, had been sent from Munchen, Germany, and contained more than 180 grams of MDMA.

During a search of the apartment, officers seized various quantities of marijuana, LSD, cocaine, THC, Xanax and ketamine, Astorga said. Officers also found a digital scale, baggies, empty capsules, other drug paraphernalia, and another mail parcel that was addressed to Chopra.

After Chopra learned about the search, Astorga said, he contacted Dempsey and Jacob and asked them to take responsibility for a quantity of the controlled substances found in the apartment.

Dempsey and Jacob have since been convicted for their part in the conspiracy and are awaiting sentencing.

Chopra is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec.12. before U.S. District Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford.

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