2nd man sentenced in relation to Yellowknife drug raids

Stan Cochrane was sentenced to nine months in jail on Friday after pleading guilty to two counts of trafficking cocaine.

A second man has been sentenced in connection with drug raids police made in Yellowknife last December.

On Friday, Stan Cochrane was sentenced to nine months in jail after pleading guilty to two counts of trafficking cocaine.

He sold small amounts of crack cocaine to a female undercover police officer twice in one day out of a back door of the Beck Court Apartment building. The buys were part of the RCMP's Operation Goblin, aimed at disrupting the activities of a gang from British Columbia selling drugs in Yellowknife.

The next day, police knocked on his apartment door with a search warrant in hand. In Cochrane's apartment, police found a small amount of crack, thousands of dollars in cash, an electronic scale and other items associated with drug dealing.

It was the first time the 51-year-old from Stephenville, N. L., has been in trouble with the law.

Cochrane's lawyer, Peter Harte, said his client was having trouble making ends meet and was selling crack to get ahead.

The Crown prosecutor had asked for a sentence of 16 to 18 months, calling crack a plague on the community. But Harte challenged that, saying alcohol is far more harmful to communities across the North. He estimated that booze is a factor in 80 to 90 per cent of the cases in criminal court. The prosecutor said that's only because alcohol is far more available than cocaine.

One other man swept up in the raids — Matthew Jager — was sentenced earlier this month to 15 months in jail for possessing the proceeds of crime. Four others are still facing charges of drug trafficking.