- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 25, 2016

HONOLULU (AP) - A man admitted in court Wednesday that he got involved with a Maui meth trafficking ring to support his own drug habit, which led to his assaulting two federal agents - one of whom he bit.

Edward Vierra pleaded guilty in federal court in Honolulu to conspiracy and two counts of assault. Vierra was under arrest last year after receiving a package of methamphetamine mailed from California to Maui, according to court documents. After he and a co-defendant were taken to Honolulu, Vierra asked to use to the restroom, then later refused to go back to the cell, the documents said.

“I resisted law enforcement, and we got in one scuffle,” Vierra said. “And I guess I caused bodily injury - while we was in the bathroom - to two agents.”

Vierra bit a Drug Enforcement Administration task force officer’s finger and left a DEA special agent with bruised ribs, Assistant U.S. Attorney Tony Roberts said. Vierra told the judge Roberts’ description was true.

The case involves two packages mailed to Wailuku containing a total of about 7 pounds of meth, a criminal complaint said.

When a postal inspector posing as a mail carrier delivered the second package, agents saw Vierra running from the house with a backpack. He then dropped the bag, threw his hands up and said “just take me to jail,” Roberts said.

There was about $10,000 in cash in the backpack and some meth in Vierra’s pockets, Roberts said.

While incarcerated, Vierra underwent drug treatment, he told U.S. Magistrate Judge Kevin Chang.

When Chang asked him to describe in his own words why he’s guilty of the conspiracy charge, he said: “I was using crystal methamphetamine … I got involved for support my habit.”

Vierra’s defense attorney, Walter Rodby, said he’s hopeful that because his 21-year-old client doesn’t have a previous criminal history, he’ll receive less than the mandatory minimum 10-year sentence.

Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 8.

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