NYPD Officer Andre Clarke Arrested for Conspiracy to Distribute Oxycodone in Vermont
The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that Andre Clarke, age 36, of the Bronx, New York, was arrested today in Queens for conspiring to distribute Oxycodone in Vermont from 2011 through June 2014. Clarke, who has been employed as a New York City police officer since 2002, will have his initial appearance tomorrow in federal court in Brooklyn. At this hearing, he is expected to be given a date to report to Vermont federal court for arraignment. At the arraignment in Vermont, he will enter a plea to the charge. On July 7, 2015, a federal grand jury sitting in Burlington handed down a multi-count Indictment, which charges Clarke, Michael Foreste, and Dannis Hackney with the Vermont Oxycodone conspiracy. Foreste and Hackney are charged with additional drug trafficking and money laundering offenses.
According to prosecutors, Clarke, who lived in the Bronx and Long Island during the events in question, supplied oxycodone to Michael Foreste, of Valley Stream, New York. Foreste, in turn, supplied the pills to Dannis Hackney, of Burlington, Vermont, who sold them to Burlington area addicts. Foreste personally brought Hackney pills, and sometimes sent them via U.S. Mail. Clarke, Foreste, and Hackney transferred drug proceeds using various bank accounts. Foreste and Hackney are also each charged with two counts of money laundering based on this banking activity. Foreste and Hackney have been in custody since their arrests in June 2014 and are awaiting trial.
The Indictment charging Clarke with drug trafficking is an accusation only; he is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted on the oxycodone conspiracy charge, each defendant faces up to 20 years in prison. The money laundering counts carry also carry a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment. The actual sentence, in the event of conviction, will be determined by the Court with reference to the advisory Federal Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory sentencing factors.
The investigation spanned more than a year and was a collaborative effort of Homeland Security Investigations; the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Drug Enforcement Administration; and the New York City Police Internal Affairs Bureau.
Assistant United States Attorney Christina E. Nolan is handling the prosecution.