Elmhurst man admits to using Long Island home to grow marijuana and produce ecstasy

Photos courtesy of the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York

An Elmhurst man admitted to using a Long Island home to produce large amounts of ecstasy pills and grow marijuana, prosecutors announced Wednesday.

Joseph Guida, 45, pleaded guilty to using a home in Mastic, Long Island, as a drug lab. Guida faces up to 20 years in prison at sentencing.

As a part of the guilty plea, Guida agreed to forfeit his interest in the Mastic residence and a Dodge Durango that he used in connection with his drug operation.

“Guida turned a house in a residential neighborhood into a drug factory, with total disregard for the danger posed to his neighbors by the volatile chemicals used to manufacture ecstasy,” said United States Attorney Richard P. Donoghue. “Today’s guilty plea is the result of swift action taken by this office, working closely with our law enforcement partners, to safely shut down the defendant’s illegal drug operation.”

According to court filings, Guida — who worked as an electrician for the New York City Department of Environmental Protection — used a house in Mastic to manufacture MDMA and marijuana for resale between November 2013 and December 2018. In December 2018, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers intercepted a package containing PMK methyl-glycidate (PMK), a known MDMA (ecstasy) ingredient, that was mailed from China to Guida’s Elmhurst apartment.

Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) officers went to question Guida on Dec. 13, and Guida admitted to ordering the PMK from China. Guida also admitted to using the Mastic residence as an MDMA lab and marijuana grow-house.

A subsequent search of the home by the Suffolk County Police Department revealed that chemicals and laboratory equipment for manufacturing MDMA, as well as approximately 36 marijuana plants and approximately 1.3 kilograms of processed marijuana were on the premises. Guida was arrested and taken into custody shortly after.

“Guida created a clandestine lab in his home to manufacture synthetics drugs and grow illegal marijuana. He sought to make a profit from his criminal business while endangering those in his community,” said HSI Special Agent-in-Charge Peter C. Fitzhugh. “It was the seamless collaboration with our partners at CBP, DEA and New York State Police before and during this investigation that allowed law enforcement to shut down Guida and his illicit enterprise.”

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