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New Haven Man Sentenced to More Than Six Years in Federal Prison for Distributing Crack Cocaine

MAY 30 (NEW HAVEN, Conn.)   –  John J. Arvanitis, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and Deirdre M. Daly, Acting United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that Earl Banks, also known as “E.J.,” 22, of New Haven, was sentenced yesterday by United States District Judge Vanessa L. Bryant in Hartford to 78 months of imprisonment, followed by four years of supervised release, for distributing crack cocaine.

Banks is one of more than 100 individuals charged as a result of “Operation Bloodline,” a joint law enforcement investigation targeting narcotics trafficking and gang violence in the Dwight-Kensington and Fair Haven sections of New Haven.  Led by the DEA New Haven Task Force and the New Haven and Hamden Police Departments, the year-long investigation included the use of court-authorized wiretaps on numerous telephones, extensive physical surveillance, controlled purchases of narcotics, execution of search warrants and seizures of narcotics and firearms.

The investigation revealed that Banks conspired with others to purchase and redistribute crack cocaine.  On December 13, 2011 and February 2, 2012, law enforcement officers conducted controlled purchases of crack from Banks.

Banks, who was on state probation at the time of the offense, has been detained since his arrest on May 17, 2012.  On January 28, 2013, he pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute 28 grams or more of cocaine base (“crack”).

This matter is being investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Haven Task Force, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the New Haven, Hamden, West Haven, North Haven, Branford, Ansonia and Meriden Police Departments.  The United States Marshals Service, the Connecticut State Police, the Connecticut Department of Correction, Parole and Community Services and the Milford, Hartford, New Britain, North Branford and Stratford Police Departments have provided valuable assistance to the investigation.

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