U.S. Department of Justice
Peter F. Neronha
United States Attorney
District of Rhode Island
June 1, 2013
Four Detained, Six Firearms Seized in Alleged Drug Trafficking Conspiracy
Fifteen-month investigation into alleged distribution of
cocaine, heroin, synthetic drugs and Ecstasy
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Four men have been arrested on federal drug charges and ordered detained, and six firearms including a suspected automatic weapon were seized by federal, state and local law enforcement agents and officers in connection with a fifteen-month multi-agency investigation initiated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) into the alleged trafficking of cocaine, heroin, Ecstasy and a synthetic drug termed “Molly.” Law enforcement also seized additional amounts of drugs and cash, and discovered an alleged marijuana grow in the home of an individual with a medical marijuana caregiver card authorized by the State of Rhode Island.
According to an affidavit in support of criminal complaints and search warrants filed with the U.S. District Court, the investigation initiated by ATF and investigated jointly with DEA, and assisted by agents and officers from the FBI, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), United States Marshals Service, Rhode Island State Police and Cranston, Pawtucket, Providence, and Warwick Police Departments determined that the conspiracy was allegedly responsible for a significant quantity of drugs allegedly being trafficked to other drug dealers and to drug users. One of the defendants arrested is an alleged member of a street gang.
The investigation and arrests were announced by United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha; Eugenio A. Marquez, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Boston Field Office of ATF; John J. Arvanitis, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA’s New England Field Division; Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Boston Field Office; Bruce M. Foucart, Special Agent in Charge of HSI in New England; United States Marshal Jamie A. Hainsworth; Colonel Steven G, O’Donnell, Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police; Cranston Police Chief Colonel Marco Palombo, Jr; Pawtucket Police Chief Paul King; Providence Police Chief Colonel Hugh T. Clements, Jr.; and Warwick Police Chief Colonel Stephen M. McCartney.
Arrested and ordered detained on Friday by U.S. District Court Magistrate Judges Patricia A. Sullivan and Lincoln D. Almond on charges of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances; distribution of controlled substances; and use of a telephone to commit drug offenses were:
- Salee Yang, 29, of Pawtucket, the primary target of investigation. During the investigation, an undercover ATF Agent allegedly purchased a total of 137.1 grams of heroin, 235 grams of cocaine powder, 392.1 grams of crack cocaine, 471.7 grams and 112 pills consisting of a synthetic powdered drug termed “Molly,” and 100 Ecstasy pills directly from Yang for a total of $61,025. A handgun was seized from Yang. Yang’s Pawtucket residence was among the locations searched by law enforcement.
- Eric Negron, 48, of Pawtucket, according to information presented to the court, a supplier of heroin, cocaine and crack cocaine to Yang. Negron’s residence and a barber shop in Providence where he is employed were among the locations searched by law enforcement.
- Peter Lietar, 37, of Pawtucket allegedly supplied Ecstasy and a synthetic drug termed “Molly” to Yang. During a search of Lietar’s residence, law enforcement discovered an alleged marijuana grow which was in the process of being harvested. According to information presented to the court, Lietar, who had previously been convicted of armed robbery in Massachusetts, held an expired Rhode Island medical marijuana card and valid Rhode Island medical marijuana caregiver card. A handgun and a rifle were seized from Lietar.
- Stanz Hun, 25, of Cranston, who, according to information presented to the court, was a customer of Yang and who allegedly operated his own drug trafficking business. It is alleged that Yang is a member of the 4/5th Mafia and PSB street gang. Law enforcement agents seized from Yang a suspected automatic weapon, two handguns, $600 in cash, and a small amount of marijuana. Hun’s residence was among the locations searched by law enforcement.
A criminal complaint is merely an allegation and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gerard B. Sullivan
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