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Buffalo man with $40,000 worth of pot pleads guilty

A Buffalo man arrested last May with 18 pounds of marijuana in his car pleaded guilty today to first-degree criminal possession of marijuana.

Andrew Powell, 30, of Gilbert Street, faces up to 5½ years in prison when he is sentenced June 13 by Erie County Judge Michael L. D’Amico. Powell is free on $15,000 bail.

Powell was arrested May 10 in a parking lot on East Eagle Street after arriving there in his car to make a marijuana sale, prosecutors said.

When narcotics detectives from the Erie County Sheriff’s Office and Buffalo Police Department asked Powell to get out of his vehicle, he threw a wad of paper containing marijuana on the ground, which they recovered.

After obtaining a search warrant for the vehicle, detectives found two packages of marijuana valued at about $40,000.

Powell, a native of Jamaica, is a permanent U.S. resident but faces immigration review, according to Erie County Assistant District Attorney Patrick B. Shanahan.