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News Release
U.S. Department of Justice
Peter F. Neronha
United States Attorney
District of Rhode Island

May 30, 2012

Armed Drug Trafficker Sentenced to 11 Years in Federal Prison

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Shelton Smalls, 43, of Providence, convicted by a federal court jury in December 2011 on firearm and drug trafficking charges, was sentenced today to 132 months in federal prison, announced United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha and Providence Public Safety Commissioner Steven M. Pare.

U.S. District Court Judge Mary M. Lisi also sentenced Smalls to serve 10 years of supervised release upon completion of his prison term. Smalls, who was previously convicted of numerous drug trafficking crimes, was convicted by a federal court jury on December 9, 2011, of trafficking crack cocaine, being in possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

According to evidence presented to the jury, on April 26, 2011, detectives assigned to the Providence Police Department’s Narcotics and Organized Crime Bureau were conducting surveillance in a restaurant parking lot where they watched as a person got into Smalls’ vehicle moments after Smalls arrived. In a meeting that lasted less than 30 seconds, detectives say they witnessed what they believed to be a drug transaction when Smalls provided what appeared to be small packets in exchange for cash.

Immediately after the transaction was completed, the person left Smalls’ vehicle and walked directly into the restaurant and into a restroom followed by a detective. The person voluntarily turned over to the detective packets of heroin and crack cocaine that he had just purchased from Smalls. While the person in the bathroom was being taken into custody, detectives outside the restaurant arrested Smalls.

Smalls later admitted to detectives that he had additional drugs stored at his residence. Smalls voluntarily allowed detectives to search the apartment where they discovered and seized a .357 revolver and a .22 caliber handgun, heroin, cocaine, crack cocaine, Saboxone, Zamex, $1,300 in cash and assorted drug trafficking supplies. Detectives had already seized $853 in cash from Small’s pockets.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Gerard B. Sullivan and Leslie J. Kane.

 The matter was investigated by the Providence Police Department with the assistance of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.



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