St. Tammany Parish Traffic Stop Results in Florida Man Being Sentenced for Violating the Federal Controlled Substances Act

Published 10:00 am Friday, November 19, 2021

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NEW ORLEANS, LA – U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans announced today that KENNIE SANTOS-PAYANO, age 26, a resident of Kissimmee, Florida, was sentenced to 51 months’ imprisonment by United States District Court Judge Mary Ann Vial Lemmon for possession with the intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine hydrochloride. Additionally, SANTOS-PAYANO was ordered to serve five (5) years of supervised release and pay a $100 mandatory special assessment fee. No fines were imposed in this case.

According to court records, on September 25, 2019, a Louisiana State Police Trooper conducted a traffic stop in Madisonville, St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana, on Interstate 12 eastbound on a vehicle bearing a Florida license plate.  The stop was based on a traffic violation.  The trooper identified the driver and sole occupant of the vehicle as SANTOS-PAYANO.

Shortly after the traffic stop, troopers deployed a trained and qualified K-9 drug detection dog, and the dog performed a free air sniff test on the exterior of SANTOS-PAYANO’s vehicle.  The K-9 alerted to the presence of narcotics in the vehicle.  A subsequent search of the vehicle resulted in the discovery of 8.5 kilograms of cocaine hydrochloride.

The Office of Homeland Security Investigations and the Louisiana State Police investigated this case. Assistant United States Attorney Bayonle Osundare is in charge of the prosecution.