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Dinelle also gets life sentence in a U.S. prison for role in smuggling weed

Published on January 22, 2016
Scales of justice

CORNWALL, Ontario – Unsurprisingly another man caught up in a multi-million dollar smuggling operation based out of Cornwall has received the same sentence in a U.S. court as his partner – life.

Gaetan Dinelle offered a 15-minute critique of the criminal justice system in the United States Thursday morning before a judge laid out the life sentence for being part of an illegal operation that ferried marijuana into the U.S. from Cornwall through Akwesasne.

Not unlike his partner Mickey Woods who was sentenced last week in Syracuse, Dinelle's conviction also includes a charge of operating a continuing criminal enterprise which comes with an automatic life sentence.

"It played out basically the same way Wood's played out a week ago," said prosecutor Carl Eurenius.

Woods and Dinelle smuggled dope from Cornwall from 2005 to 2008. The court heard that Woods procured large quantities of pot in Canada and arranged with Dinelle to have it smuggled across the border using couriers who then delivered it to buyers throughout the eastern U.S., including the Boston area.

Authorities suggested during the trial the operation smuggled 11 tons of high-grade pot worth about $47 million.

Dinelle won't be sentenced until next Thursday.

A U.S. newspaper reported last summer police seized nearly $2 million in cash and 400 kg of marijuana from couriers involved in the trafficking enterprise.