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Man sentenced for meth operation

By Karen Colbenson

Post-Bulletin, Austin MN

A 63-year-old Austin man who was involved in numerous sales of methamphetamine last year to Austin police informants was sentenced Friday to nearly five years in prison.

Rogelio Rodriguez Sanchez was sentenced to 48 months in prison for second-degree controlled substance crime and 58 months for second-degree controlled substance crime with one point of criminal history. The sentences will run concurrently.

According to a criminal complaint, Sanchez helped 30-year-old Angela Dawn Martin sell about 3.2 grams of meth to a police informant on May 3, 2006, in the presence of Martin’s 5-year-old child at Sanchez’s home at 201 Sixth St. N.W.

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According to another complaint, Sanchez sold 13.5 grams of meth on June 7, 2006, to a confidential police informant during a controlled purchase at his home. A teenage girl allegedly was present during the sale. Sanchez also allegedly gave an undercover agent a small amount of cocaine in July as a sample.

Court documents show that Sanchez also was connected as a supplier for other drug dealers in the area.

In July 2006, authorities arrested Sanchez after conducting drug raids at homes in Austin, Mapleview and south of Austin. In Sanchez’s home, authorities found a .22-caliber pistol, $342 in cash and a surveillance system connected to televisions for watching areas outside of the home.

Sanchez entered guilty pleas in June in Mower District Court to second-degree drug crime and conspiracy to commit a second-degree drug crime.

In his plea, Sanchez did not admit guilt but acknowledged a jury likely would find him guilty of a more serious charge at trial because of the prosecution’s evidence.

Under the plea agreement, prosecutors dismissed remaining charges against Sanchez.

Sanchez will be credited for 138 days of time already served.

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