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Press Release

New Haven Man Sentenced to 30 Months in Federal Prison for Distributing Crack

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Connecticut

Vanessa Roberts Avery, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that on October 21, 2022, ALEXIS VIERA, 34, of New Haven, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford to 30 months of imprisonment, followed by  three years of supervised release, for distributing crack cocaine.

According to court documents and statements made in court, in 2019, the DEA New Haven Task Force began investigating a New Haven-based drug trafficking network headed by Michael Smith, also known as “Head.”  The investigation, which included court-authorized wiretaps, revealed that Smith and others were distributing heroin and crack cocaine throughout the New Haven area.  Viera converted cocaine into crack cocaine, supplied the drug to Smith, and sold it to other customers.  Viera also received crack cocaine from Smith to distribute to his customer base.

In December 2019, Smith was intercepted on a wiretap describing having shot at a rival drug dealer.  New Haven Police collected 31 shell casings from a location in the Fair Haven neighborhood where the shooting occurred.  Smith was arrested on December 23, 2019.

Viera has been detained since his arrest on September 16, 2020.  On September 2, 2021, he pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute, and to possess with intent to distribute, cocaine base (“crack”).

Smith pleaded guilty to drug, firearm and money laundering charges and, on August 26, 2022, was sentenced to 13 years of imprisonment.

This investigation has been conducted by the DEA New Haven Task Force, the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division, and the New Haven, West Haven, Hamden, East Haven, North Haven, Ansonia, Meriden and Derby Police Departments.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys John T. Pierpont, Jr. and Elena L. Coronado through the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) Program.  OCDETF identifies, disrupts and dismantles drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs and transnational criminal organizations through a prosecutor-led and intelligence-driven approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.  Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

Updated October 24, 2022

Topics
Drug Trafficking