Skip to main content
Press Release

Springfield Man Sentenced to Prison for Transporting Cocaine to Connecticut

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

Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that ROLANDO PINO-MARTINEZ, 29, of Springfield, Mass., was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge Robert N. Chatigny in Hartford to 18 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for his role in a cocaine trafficking conspiracy.


According to court documents and statements made in court, in the fall of 2015, the DEA New Haven Task Force initiated an investigation into a cocaine trafficking organization headed by Halby Lopez, also known as “Harv,” of New Haven.  Omar Polanco-Mendez and Bernardo Roman-Rolan served as Lopez’s second and third in command, respectively.  The investigation revealed that Lopez, Polanco-Mendez and Roman-Rolan were obtaining bulk quantities of cocaine from multiple suppliers and redistributing the cocaine to a network of New Haven-area street-level dealers.  The investigation included court-authorized wiretaps, controlled purchases of drugs and the seizure of multiple kilograms of cocaine.


Between January 2016 and March 2016, Lopez, with the assistance of Polanco-Mendez, arranged for the delivery of approximately seven kilograms of cocaine.  Lopez used the La Familia Barber Shop located on Howard Avenue in New Haven, which he owned and operated, to distribute cocaine.


PINO-MARTINEZ acted as a courier for a Springfield-based cocaine supplier.  On February 11, 2016, investigators learned that PINO-MARTINEZ would be making a delivery of cocaine to the Lopez organization, which Polanco-Mendez had arranged.  At approximately 9:00 p.m. on that date, the Connecticut State Police stopped PINO-MARTINEZ’s vehicle on I-91 South in Meriden.  A subsequent search of the car revealed two kilograms of cocaine that were concealed in a cereal box.


PINO-MARTINEZ was arrested on federal charges on March 16, 2016.  On March 24, 2016, a grand jury in New Haven returned a 13-count indictment charging PINO-MARTINEZ, Lopez, Polanco-Mendez, Roman-Rolan and six other individuals with various narcotics offenses.  On October 4, 2016, PINO-MARTINEZ pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine.


All of the 10 defendants in this case pleaded guilty, and PINO-MARTINEZ is the last to be sentenced.


Lopez and Polanco-Mendez are currently serving prison terms of 10 years, and Roman-Rolan is serving a 68-month prison term.


The DEA New Haven Task Force includes participants from the New Haven, Hamden, West Haven, North Haven, East Haven, Branford, Ansonia, Meriden and Derby Police Departments, and the U.S. Marshals Service.

This matter was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Patrick Caruso and Jennifer Laraia.

Updated September 21, 2017

Drug Trafficking