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Guilty plea in drug-traffic plot

A man implicated in a drug conspiracy investigation that ensnared 18 people from Allen and Steuben counties and Michigan pleaded guilty this week.

Gerardo Martinez-Gaston, initially charged with a slew of drug dealing counts, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court on Tuesday to one count of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance.

As part of a plea deal, federal prosecutors will recommend that Martinez-Gaston receive less than the 20 years that count carries, but an exact number is not given in court documents.

Martinez-Gaston was charged as part of an investigation by federal agents comprising the Safe Streets Task Force.

A federal attorney said earlier that the network Martinez-Gaston belonged to was a major drug trafficking ring in the city.