A Minneapolis man with a history of convictions on violent and drug crimes in Wisconsin and Illinois has pleaded guilty in federal court to one count of possession of fentanyl with intent to distribute.
Court documents say Andre Garner, 42, came under surveillance by the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office Violent Offender Task Force (VOTF) following a tip to authorities about the sale of fentanyl in south Minneapolis.
Following an investigation and collection of evidence from trash that tested positive for narcotics, a search warrant was executed on Jan. 24, 2023, at a duplex residence near 61st and Penn Avenue South.
Nearly 800 grams of fentanyl were recovered in a van that registered to Garner. During their search, law enforcement also recovered over 1,000 grams of cocaine, two firearms and $9,400 in cash. As a part of his guilty plea, Garner admitted that he told law enforcement that anything law enforcement found was his, including the money and the van.
Garner was eventually charged with four counts including possession of fentanyl with intent to distribute, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, possession of a firearm related to drug trafficking, and being a felon in possession of a firearm.
Garner admitted to authorities that he intended to distribute the drugs within and outside the Minnesota area.
The plea agreement on only one count of intent to distribute fentanyl indicates that Garner could face up to 10 years in prison, and the other three charges will be dismissed if Garner cooperates fully with the pre-sentence investigation. A sentencing hearing has not yet been set, and Garner remains in custody at this time.
Court documents state that Garner has at least one prior drug-related conviction in Wisconsin and four convictions from Cook County, Ill., comprising three for illegal possession or aggravated use of a weapon and one for possession of narcotics.
In addition to VOTF, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives assisted in the investigation.
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