BUFFALO, N.Y.-- U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Geoffrey Purdie, 41, of Niagara, Ontario, Canada, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Richard J. Arcara, to exporting anabolic steroids from the United States into Canada. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, a $500,000 fine, or both.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Mary Catherine Baumgarten, who is handling the case, stated that Purdie was employed as a constable with the Niagara Regional Police. On several occasions in November and December 2011, the defendant entered the United States and retrieved packages containing steroids that had been shipped to a business in the U.S. Purdie then smuggled the steroids from the United States into Canada. The defendant presented his official identification as a law enforcement officer to Immigration personnel at the border in order to return to Canada.
“This Office, along with our law enforcement partners, will continue to use all of the tools at our disposal to protect the integrity of our nation’s borders,” said U.S. Attorney Hochul. “It is particularly egregious when a member of law enforcement violates his oath of office in order to engage in international criminal activity. Such conduct will continue to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."
"This conviction highlights an egregious breach of the deep trust placed in law enforcement," said James C. Spero, Special Agent in Charge for HSI Buffalo. "The defendant used his position to smuggle illegal contraband into Canada for his own financial gain. Citizens of the United States and Canada need to know that they can count on law enforcement to do the jobs they entrust us to do each day. The defendant breached that trust and will be held accountable."
The plea is the culmination of an investigation on the part of Special Agents of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of James C. Spero and the Niagara Regional Police, under the direction of Chief Jeffrey McGuire.
Sentencing is scheduled for February 28, 2013 at 12:30 p.m. before Judge Arcara.