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Haiku man arrested for 3 pounds of meth

The Maui News

WAILUKU — A Haiku man was arrested this week when police reported seizing nearly 3 pounds of methamphetamine in a search of his vehicle.

Michael Bascar, 59, was charged with first-degree promotion of a dangerous drug, attempted first-degree promotion of a dangerous drug and possessing drug paraphernalia.

He was arrested in the parking lot of the Paia Post Office while sitting in a vehicle with a USPS priority mail box on his lap, Deputy Prosecutor Tracy Jones said during Bascar’s initial appearance Thursday in Wailuku District Court.

After Bascar refused to consent to a search, a police K-9 dog alerted to the presence of drugs and police obtained a search warrant, Jones said. She said the methamphetamine recovered from the vehicle was in three heat-sealed packages of about 1 pound each that had been received in the priority mail box.

Bascar later told police he knew there was methamphetamine in the package and that he sells the drug in quantities of about an ounce at a time, Jones said.

She said police also seized cash and cellphones.

If convicted of the first-degree drug charges, Bascar could face a mandatory prison sentence of six years and eight months as a repeat offender; he was convicted in 2014 of second-degree promotion of a dangerous drug, Jones said.

She said Bascar’s criminal history includes 62 arrests and 27 convictions — 14 for felony crimes, six for misdemeanor offenses and seven for petty misdemeanors or violations. His felony convictions include five for first-degree theft, three for third-degree promotion of a dangerous drug, four for possessing drug paraphernalia and second-degree theft, Jones said.

“He’s a danger to the community,” she said, in asking that bail remain at $500,000.

Deputy Public Defender Gustavo Gonzalez asked for bail to be reduced to $250,000, saying the higher amount was excessive.

Judge Douglas Sameshima kept bail at $500,000, saying Bascar’s criminal history, the quantity of drugs seized and “the alleged admissions that he was, in fact, selling drugs poses a danger to the community.”

If he posts bail, Bascar was ordered to stay away from the Paia Post Office and its parking lot. He also was ordered not to possess illegal drugs and to report for random drug testing.

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