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New Haven Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Federal Prison for Distributing Narcotics

JUL 17 (NEW HAVEN, Conn.) -Michael J. Ferguson, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that Michael Smith, also known as “Smitty” and “Fingers,” 44, of New Haven, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Robert N. Chatigny in Hartford to 120 months of imprisonment, followed by five years of supervised release, for distributing narcotics.

Smith was 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.

On January 13, 2014, a jury found Smith guilty of one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, cocaine and cocaine base (“crack cocaine”), and one count of possession with intent to distribute, and distribution of, cocaine base.

According to the evidence presented during his trial, investigators received court-authorization to monitor three of Smith’s telephones.  The investigation revealed that Smith conspired to receive and distribute large quantities of cocaine and crack cocaine.  In addition, on October 27, 2011, Smith sold approximately 6.6 grams of crack cocaine to an individual working with law enforcement.

Smith has been detained since his arrest on May 22, 2012.  On that date, law enforcement searched an apartment connected to Smith and recovered items used to convert cocaine into crack cocaine, as well as approximately $2000 in cash.

Smith has a prior state firearms conviction, and seven prior felony drug convictions.

This matter was 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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