GREENCASTLE -- A St. Louis, Mo. man received a three-year sentence Thursday in Putnam County Circuit Court for Class C felony possession of cocaine.
Ramiro Cruz Amado, 24, was arrested in late March and charged with Class A felonies dealing in cocaine and conspiracy to deal cocaine and Class D felony possession of cocaine or a narcotic drug. The charge he pled guilty to was offered as part of a plea agreement, and the other charges were dismissed.
Putnam County Deputy Prosecutor Justin Long called the charges against Amado "significant," and asked the court to sentence Amado to four years all executed. Long said he did not feel Amado would be a good candidate for probation because he did not have local roots.
Amado's court appointed attorney James Recker said because Amado was not from the Putnam County area, he agreed that "probation's going to be impossible," and asked that his client receive a sentence of no more than two years.
Recker pointed out that his client had never had any other brushes with the law, and that he had always held employment.
Amado will receive credit for the 185 days he has spent in the Putnam County Jail. There was some question as to whether or not he was in the United States legally, and when his time at the DOC is completed, he will likely be deported back to his native Mexico.
Amado was a passenger in a vehicle that was stopped for unsafe lane movement by Putnam County Sheriff's Department officers on I-70 westbound in Cloverdale on March 30.
Officers noticed that Amado and the driver of the vehicle, Rafael Lopez, were acting suspiciously, court records said, and K-9 units were called in. Approximately 4.4 pounds of cocaine were found concealed inside the rim of a spare tire mounted below the vehicle.
Lopez, 36, of Edwardsville, Ill. is scheduled to be in court for a change of plea hearing on Oct. 8. He is charged with Class A felonies dealing in cocaine and conspiracy to deal in cocaine and Class C felony possession of cocaine.