OCT 24 (PROVIDENCE, R.I.) – John J. Arvanitis, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) New England Division, United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha and Bristol Police Chief Josue D. Canario announced that Manuel M. Chaves, 34, of Bristol, a career offender characterized by Bristol Police in a letter to the court as “a persistent problem for the community” and who is “among the most well-known and recognizable narcotics dealers in the community,” was sentenced today in federal court to 72 months in federal prison for trafficking cocaine.
U.S. District Court Judge William E. Smith also sentenced Chaves to serve five years of supervised release upon completion of his prison term. Chaves pleaded guilty on July 23, 2012, to possession with the intent to deliver cocaine.
At the time of his arrest on February 4, 2012, Chaves, who had been arrested more than a dozen times over the past twenty years and convicted in state court on several felony drug and assault charges, was on pretrial release and awaiting trial on two state felony offenses.
According to information presented to the court, Bristol Police executed a court authorized search of Chaves’ parent’s residence on February 4, 2012, where he resided. A search warrant was obtained based on information developed by Bristol Police during an on-going investigation into Chaves suspected drug dealing activities, including several suspected drug dealing transactions outside his residence witnessed by police.
A search of Chaves’ bedroom, which he kept padlocked to prevent others from entering, resulted in the seizure of 54 grams of cocaine, a pill bottle containing 23, 40mg pills of oxycodone, and a variety of other pills including 19 pills containing Methandrostenolone. Police also seized numerous items used in the packaging and distribution of drugs.
Chaves has been detained since his arrest.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sandra R. Hebert. Bristol Police investigated the matter, with the assistance of the DEA Drug Task Force.