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Press Release

Boston Gang Member Pleads Guilty to Cocaine Trafficking and Firearm Possession

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Massachusetts
Approximately $25,000 and firearm seized following arrest

BOSTON – A Boston gang member pleaded guilty today in federal court in Boston to a cocaine conspiracy and firearm possession.

Winston McGhee, 36, of Dorchester, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute cocaine and cocaine base and being a felon in possession of a firearm. U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns scheduled sentencing for June 10, 2021. Under the terms of the plea agreement, the parties agreed to a sentence of 115 months in prison. 

In June 2020, McGhee was charged along with 23 others as part of Operation Snowfall.  According to the charging documents, beginning in November 2018, law enforcement conducted an investigation into drug trafficking activities by Boston-based street gang members and associates in the Commonwealth Development in Brighton, Mass., formerly known as Fidelis Way, a multi-apartment public housing development. It is alleged that the defendants, through their drug trafficking activities, assumed control over multiple apartments, where they stored, cooked, packaged and sold drugs. As a result, their activities caused a blight of the development and reduced the quality of life of the other residents.

The second part of the investigation, which included McGhee, targeted large-scale drug suppliers and their associates, which included Boston street gang members. It is alleged that the targets continued to distribute cocaine and cocaine base throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and shutdown.  

At the conclusion of the investigation, law enforcement executed search warrants at a “stash house” and McGhee’s residence, where McGhee was arrested, and recovered approximately $25,000 in cash and a firearm.

On Feb 2, 2021, co-defendant Eric Davis pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 500 grams of more of cocaine and cocaine base and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

On the charge of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute cocaine and cocaine base, McGhee faces a sentence of up to 30 years in prison, at least six years and up to life of supervised release and a fine of up to $2 million. The charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm provides for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Brian D. Boyle, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Boston Field Division; John Gibbons, U.S. Marshal for the District of Massachusetts; Colonel Christopher Mason, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; and Boston Police Commissioner Dennis White made the announcement. Assistance with the investigation was provided by the Braintree, Cambridge, Canton, Randolph and Weymouth Police Departments; the Suffolk, Norfolk and Bristol County District Attorneys’ Offices; and the Suffolk, Plymouth and Norfolk County Sheriffs’ Office. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kaitlin O’Donnell and Timothy Moran of Lelling’s Organized Crime and Gang Unit are prosecuting the case.

The operation was conducted by a multi-agency task force through the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF), a partnership between federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking, weapons trafficking and money laundering organizations, and those primarily responsible for the nation’s illegal drug supply. More information on the OCDETF program is available here:

The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The remaining defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Updated June 9, 2021

Drug Trafficking