Laconia couple convicted of participating in methamphetamine trafficking conspiracy

 

Date: March 8, 2021

Contact: newsroom@ci.irs.gov

Concord — Acting United States Attorney John J. Farley announced that on Friday, March 5, 2021, after a four-day trial, a federal jury found Crystal Hardy and Christopher Kelly, both of Laconia, guilty of conspiracy to distribute, and possess with intent to distribute, methamphetamine. The jury also found Kelly guilty of being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

According to evidence presented during the trial, on April 5, 2019, members of the Tilton Police Department stopped Crystal Hardy for a motor vehicle violation. Christopher Kelly was a passenger in the vehicle. Officers later executed a search warrant on the vehicle and discovered methamphetamine, fentanyl, two loaded firearms, over $28,000 in cash, a digital scale, measuring tools, a pouch full of plastic baggies and a drug ledger. Other trial evidence showed that Hardy and Kelly regularly distributed methamphetamine throughout 2019 and had no legitimate income to explain the large sum of money found in the vehicle.

The two loaded firearms were discovered in a backpack that also contained a large bulletproof vest, a baton, mail addressed to Kelly and three prescription bottles in Kelly's name. As a convicted felon, Kelly is prohibited from possessing a firearm and ammunition.

Crystal Hardy is scheduled to be sentenced on June 11, 2021.

Christopher Kelly is scheduled to be sentenced on June 14, 2021.

"Methamphetamine is a very dangerous drug that can damage users' bodies and cause havoc in our communities," said Acting U.S. Attorney Farley. "When armed criminals are involved in drug trafficking, the risk to public safety is even greater. I am grateful to the Tilton Police Department and all our law enforcement partners for their work on this investigation. We will continue to work closely with our law enforcement partners to identify and prosecute those who are responsible for distributing dangerous drugs in the Granite State."

This case was the first federal jury trial conducted in New Hampshire in 2021. As with the trials conducted in 2020, the court conducted the trial using a variety of health and safety precautions. For example, all participants in the trial wore masks and maintained social distancing.

This matter was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, Tilton Police Department, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Drug Enforcement Administration, and United States Marshals Service. New Hampshire Employment Security and the Strafford County Attorney's Office also provided assistance, The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Debra Walsh and Aaron Gingrande.