A former Stamford restaurateur has been sentenced to 42 months of imprisonment for trafficking cocaine.
Miguel Lara, a citizen of El Salvador last residing in Bridgeport, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford for his part in a Drug Enforcement Administration investigation into the cocaine trafficking activities of Christian Paulino Rodriguez. The investigation, which began in 2016, revealed that Rodriguez’s cocaine supplier was Lara, then the co-owner of Stamford’s Café Luna.
In November 2016, an individual working with law enforcement arranged to buy five kilograms of cocaine from Rodriguez for a price of $28,000 per kilogram. On Nov. 15, officers with the DEA’s Bridgeport High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force arrested Lara and Rodriguez after Lara delivered the cocaine to a prearranged location.
Lara has been detained since his arrest. On Nov. 27, 2017, he pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute, and distribution of 500 grams or more of cocaine.
Rodriguez, a citizen of the Dominican Republic, pleaded guilty to the same charge on July 18, 2017. He was sentenced to 42 months’ imprisonment on Nov. 21.
Lara and Rodriguez face immigration proceedings when they are released from prison.