HAYWARD (BCN) – A 42-year-old Hayward man has been found guilty of running a drug smuggling scheme, according to an announcement Monday by U.S. Department of Justice for the Northern District of California. Lemack Bellot attempted to facilitate the smuggling of cocaine through San Francisco International Airport between May and November of 2018, prosecutors said.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency received a tip that Bellot had been paying airport employees to allow drugs to be smuggled past security. A confidential source — who unbeknownst to Bellot was working for the federal agency — began negotiating with him regarding shipments that were in fact not really cocaine, officials said.
During the eight-month period in 2018, Bellot made a variety of arrangements to help the source smuggle cocaine through the airport, prosecutors said.
The source would meet with Bellot at his Hayward business, the Fogline Sports Bar and Grill, where Bellot told the informant that he used to run “bricks” — or kilograms of cocaine — from Bay Area airports to cities across the country until his contact was arrested and that he had taken a break, but was starting up again now that he had found a new airport contact.
Bellot was indicted in February of 2019 by a federal grand jury on two count: one for attempting to aid and abet the possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine and another count for 5 kilograms or more of cocaine. He was convicted on both counts.
A date for Bellot’s sentencing has not yet been set. He faces a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 plus restitution on the first count, as well as life in prison and a fine of $500,000 on the second count.
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