This is BIG news, read the ‘cut and paste’ below from the Saratogian and NY Daily News websites for the full story. If Giove is found to be guilty it is a very sad day for the downhill community…a minimum of 5 years in jail for one of the most colourful characters there has ever been in the sport of mountainbiking. Read on:
From The Saratogian
WILTON — Nearly 400 pounds of marijuana were seized in a drug bust on Preserve Way Tuesday.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration along with the Capital District Drug Enforcement Task Force conducted the bust at 22 Preserve Way Tuesday afternoon. Eric Canori, 30, of that address, and Melissa Giove, 37, of Chesapeake, Va. were both arrested on charges they conspired to posses and distribute more than 100 kilograms of marijuana.
DEA spokesperson Erin Mulvey said the DEA learned of Giove and Canori’s plans when Illinois State Police notified them about a suspicious traffic stop on June 13. DEA officials put their vehicle under surveillance until it arrived in Wilton. Mulvey said the drugs’ final destination is “still under investigation.”
Giove, a former professional mountain biker, and Canori were arraigned in front of U.S. Magistrate Judge David R. Homer Wednesday and were remanded to custody of U.S. Marshals pending detention hearings Thursday at 1:30 p.m.
Between about June 12 and June 16 Giove, Canori, and others agreed to receive and then further distribute about 384 pounds of marijuana, according to information from the DEA. Following their arrests, a box-trailer belonging to Giove on Preserve Way and Canori’s residence on the same road were searched. Approximately 400 pounds of marijuana were seized in the trailer and residence, along with drug packaging materials, a money counter and other drug paraphernalia, and over one million dollars in U.S. currency. If convicted, Giove and Conari face a mandatory minimum sentence of 5 years, a maximum penalty of 40 years imprisonment and a fine of up to $2 million.
The case was investigated by the Capital District Drug Enforcement Task Force; the New York State Police; the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of Illinois; the Quad City Metropolitan Enforcement Group; the Henry County, Illinois State’s Attorney’s Office; the DEA Rock Island, Illinois Post of Duty; the DEA Norfolk, Virginia Resident Office; and the Illinois State Police.
Following the defendants’ initial appearance, DEA Special Agent in Charge Gilbride stated, “(Drug) trafficking can lead you downhill fast. From championship mountain biking to street level drug dealing, the only reason people turn to drug trafficking is to make a profit from the sale of illicit narcotics. DEA and our law enforcement partners successfully put the brakes on this drug trafficking organization and put them out of business.”
From the NY Daily News
Former champion downhill mountain biker Missy Giove charged with marijuana distribution
BY Michael O’Keeffe
Wednesday, June 17th 2009, 5:50 PM. A former champion downhill mountain biker known for her outrageous looks and daredevil riding style was busted on Tuesday and charged with marijuana distribution by federal agents in upstate Wilton, N.Y. Missy “The Missile” Giove, 37, and co-defendant Eric Canori, 30, face up to 40 years in prison and a $2 million fine if convicted. “Drug trafficking can lead you downhill fast,” Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent John Gilbride said. Giove is the most successful and perhaps colorful rider in competitive mountain biking’s history. She grabbed a record 14 National Off-Road Bicycle Association championships and 11 World Cup wins, but her success was only part of her appeal. Giove, who sported a punk hair-do during her competitive riding days, rode with a dead piranha around her neck – to remind her to be aggressive – and the ashes of her deceased dog tucked inside her sports bra. Giove was also openly lesbian, a rarity in the homophobic world of sports.
In many ways, she was the face of her sport – she was featured in a Reebok ad and in several lifestyle magazines. Giove was also interviewed by David Letterman.
A criminal complaint filed Wednesday in Albany says that officers with an upstate drug task force learned that Giove, Canori and others conspired to possess and distribute a large amount of marijuana. Investigators watched Giove, who lives in Chesapeake, Va., get off a plane at the Albany County Airport and take a cab to a hotel, where she met a confidential informant and picked up a pick-up truck and box-trailer.
Giove drove the truck to Canori’s home in Wilton, just north of Saratoga Springs. Some of the contents of the trailer were unloaded at Canori’s home.
Investigators followed Giove when she left the Wilton residence and her truck was stopped by investigators. Approximately 400 pounts of marijuana were found in the trailer and at Canori’s house.
Giove and Canori made their initial court appearance in Albany on Wednesday before United States Magistrate Judge David Homer. A detention hearing is scheduled for Thursday.
missy giove the missile arrested on charges they to posses and distribute more than 100 kilograms of marijuana