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It seemed like a strange argument for convicted drug dealer Andre Ingram to make, but then again, the Woodland Terrace drug bust has been a strange case all the way around. In February, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced that it was dismissing all charges against 13 of the 23 defendants arrested in a five-month drug sting last year at the Woodland Terrace public-housing project in Southeast Washington. The reversal meant that not only cases scheduled for trial but also several that already had resulted in guilty pleas would be dismissed because of late or incomplete discovery disclosures by prosecutors about the criminal acts of a crack-abusing informant, who made scores of videotaped drug buys during the sting and crashed an unmarked police car last year. In a letter last week to Legal Times from federal prison in Petersburg, Va., Ingram says he should be released, as well. Ingram pleaded guilty to three counts of PCP distribution in a drug-free zone, resulting in an 84-month prison sentence. Ingram says he not only sold drugs to the informant in videotaped buys that weren’t revealed by prosecutors but also lived with the informant for about five years. “They tried to label me as general of the PCP operation in Woodland Terrace,” Ingram says, downplaying his role. “To me, a general hands out work, gives orders, and watches his soldiers.” Henry Schoenfeld, Ingram’s court-appointed defense attorney, filed a one-page motion seeking to withdraw Ingram’s guilty pleas, citing the discovery irregularities. The U.S. Attorney’s Office opposed the motion, stating that all of Ingram’s charges stemmed from drug sales to undercover police officers, not the informant, making his case one of the 10 that should not be dismissed. Office spokesman Channing Phillips says prosecutors don’t have any videotapes showing Ingram selling drugs to the informant.
Brendan Smith can be contacted at [email protected].

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