Acting United States Attorney Gregory G. Brooker announced the conviction of ELFRED WILLIAM PETRUK, 38, for methamphetamine trafficking-related offense. After a four-day trial before U.S. District Judge Ann D. Montgomery in Duluth, Minn., the jury found PETRUK guilty of one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and one count of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. A sentencing hearing has been set for October 18, 2017.
"We've had Elfred Petruk on our radar for a number of years, and now after this third federal indictment and conviction, we couldn't be more satisfied with the jury's decision yesterday," said Special Agent in Charge James Modzelewski of ATF's Saint Paul Field Division. "We target Minnesota's most violent offenders and through the shared perseverance of ATF and our partners on the Lake Superior Drug and Violent Crime Task Force, we can finally put this incredibly violent man behind bars."
According to the evidence presented at trial, in July 2016, law enforcement agents received information that PETRUK, who had just been placed on federal supervised release at the time, was trafficking large quantities of methamphetamine from the Twin Cities area to the Twin Ports area. In September 2016, on multiple occasions, law enforcement agents observed PETRUK traveling from Twin Ports to the Twin Cities, making short-duration stops at remote locations and at homes of known methamphetamine users and dealers. On September 20, 2016, agents stopped and detained PETRUK and, upon execution of a search warrant, recovered more than 800 grams of methamphetamine hidden in a compartment under the hood of PETRUK’S vehicle.
According to the evidence presented at trial and documents filed in court, following PETRUK’S arrest, law enforcement agents executed search warrants at several of the locations in Duluth, Minn. and Superior, Wisc. suspected to be involved with PETRUK’S drug-trafficking activities. During the course of the searches, law enforcement agents seized a loaded 9mm handgun, methamphetamine, cash, digital scales, packaging materials, and other drug-trafficking paraphernalia.
The defendant has multiple prior state court convictions and two prior federal convictions. In September 2006, PETRUK pleaded guilty in federal district court to one count of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and was sentenced to 120 months in prison. In July 2015, PETRUK was found guilty by a federal jury of one count of corruptly attempting to obstruct an official proceeding and was sentenced to 46 months in prison.
This case is the result of an investigation by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Duluth Police Department, the Superior, Wisconsin Police Department, and the Lake Superior Drug and Violent Crime Task Force. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Allen A. Slaughter and Benjamin Bejar prosecuted the case.