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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Connecticut

Thursday, April 9, 2015

New London Man Sentenced to 30 Months in Prison for Distributing Cocaine

Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that EDGARDO CENTENO, 43, of New London, was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge Vanessa L. Bryant in Hartford to 30 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for distributing cocaine.

According to court documents and statements made in court, in early 2012, Homeland Security Investigations (“HSI”), the U.S. Secret Service and the New London Police Department initiated an investigation to combat the large-scale trafficking of heroin and cocaine from the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico into and around southeastern Connecticut.  The investigation revealed that certain members of the conspiracy coordinated the shipment of heroin, and sometimes cocaine, via human couriers from the Dominican Republic to the United States.  Other members of the conspiracy obtained kilogram-quantities of cocaine in Puerto Rico and then mailed the drug to locations in and around New London where it was sold to distributors and customers.  Narcotics also were obtained from sources in New York City and Rhode Island.

CENTENO regularly purchased cocaine from Juan G. Cheverez, also known as “Guinchi,” who had received the drug from individuals in Puerto Rico via the U.S. Mail.  CENTENO then sold cocaine in smaller quantities to his own customers.

On August 20, 2014, CENTENO pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute cocaine.

On February 18, 2015, Cheverez was sentenced to 77 months of imprisonment.

This matter was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations; U.S. Secret Service; U.S. Postal Inspection Service; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Air and Marine; Connecticut State Police; New London Police Department, Norwich Police Department, Waterford Police Department, Groton Town Police Department, East Lyme Police Department and Putnam Police Department.  The United States Marshals Service; ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations; Drug Enforcement Administration; HSI Assistant Attaché, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; HSI Arecibo, Puerto Rico Resident Office;  Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation; Connecticut Department of Correction, Parole and Community Services; and the Groton City, Willimantic, New Haven and Bristol Police Departments have provided valuable assistance to the investigation.

The federal case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sarah P. Karwan, Alina P. Reynolds and Henry K. Kopel.  The state cases are being prosecuted by the State’s Attorney for the New London Judicial District and Senior Assistant State’s Attorneys Paul Narducci and Stephen Carney.

Updated April 9, 2015