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Press Release

Rhode Island Man Sentenced to 179 Months for Trafficking Heroin into Southeastern Connecticut

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

John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that EDDY PENA, 30, of Providence, Rhode Island, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford to 179 months of imprisonment, followed by five years of supervised release, for trafficking heroin.

On February 20, 2019, a jury found Pena guilty of one count of conspiracy to distribute, and to possess with intent to distribute, one kilogram or more of heroin.  Prior to his trial, on February 4, 2019, Pena pleaded guilty to two counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute.

According to court documents, statements made in court and the evidence introduced during the trial, this matter stems from an investigation that began after several heroin overdoses in southeastern Connecticut, including two overdose deaths involving a heroin and fentanyl mix that occurred in January, 2016.  The investigation, which included court-authorized wiretaps and controlled purchases of narcotics, revealed that Pena regularly supplied Michael Luciano, of New London, with large quantities of heroin.  Luciano, who also received heroin from sources in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, distributed the drug through a network of street-level dealers in southeastern Connecticut.  The evidence at trial also indicated that Pena supplied heroin to individuals in Providence, Rhode Island, and Fall River, Massachusetts, as early as 2012.   Based on the trial evidence, Judge Shea found that Pena was responsible for the trafficking of at least 10 kilograms of heroin but less than 30 kilograms of heroin, and that Pena was the leader of a conspiracy that was extensive and involved five or more participants.

Pena has been detained since his arrest on November 14, 2017.  On that date, investigators executed 12 federal search warrants and seized more than three kilograms of heroin from other members of the conspiracy, and approximately $14,000 in cash from Pena.

On December 12, 2017, a grand jury in Hartford returned a 25-count superseding indictment charging Pena, Luciano and 19 other individuals with various heroin trafficking offenses.

On June 27, 2018, Luciano pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin.  On January 29, 2019, he was sentenced to 12 years of imprisonment.       

This matter has been investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Marshals Service, Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division, Homeland Security Investigations, Connecticut State Police Statewide Narcotics Task Force East and the New London, Norwich, Waterford, Attleboro (Mass.) and Freetown (Mass.) Police Departments.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys S. Dave Vatti and Geoffrey M. Stone.

Updated August 9, 2019

Topics
Drug Trafficking
Opioids