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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, July 11, 2022

Career Offender Sentenced to Four Years in Prison for Distributing Cocaine

BOSTON – A Cambridge man was sentenced on July 8, 2022 in federal court in Boston for cocaine distribution.

Dante Starks, a/k/a “Tay,” 40, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Nathaniel M. Gorton to four years in prison and three years of supervised release. In March 2021, Starks pleaded guilty to one count of distribution of cocaine.

This case was a part of Operation Landshark, a federal investigation targeting impact players and repeat offenders in Brockton and Boston, each who have prior convictions for acts of violence, firearm offenses and/or drug trafficking.

The investigation identified Starks a career offender and target impact player due to his multiple felony convictions of controlled substance offenses. In July 2018, Starks sold approximately 14 grams of cocaine to a cooperating witness in a Brockton parking lot. At the time of the offense, Starks was on probation for a 2015 conviction out of Suffolk Superior Court for multiple drug distribution offenses, for which he served one year in prison.

Previously, in 2012, Starks was convicted in Plymouth Superior Court of drug distribution offenses, assault and battery of a police officer and resisting arrest, for which he served three years in prison. In 2011, Starks was convicted in Dorchester District Court of drug distribution offenses for which he served 30 months in prison. In 2004, Starks was charged and fined for drug distribution offenses.

United States Attorney Rachael S. Rollins; Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division; Colonel Christopher Mason, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz; Suffolk County District Attorney Kevin Hayden; Boston Police Commissioner Gregory Long; and Brockton Police Chief Brenda Perez made the announcement today. Valuable assistance was provided by the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Boston Field Division; Plymouth and Essex County Sheriff’s Offices; Massachusetts Department of Corrections; U.S. Parole Commission; U.S. Postal Inspection Services; and the U.S. Secret Service. Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy E. Moran, Chief of Rollins’ Organized Crime & Gang Unit, prosecuted the case.

Operation Landshark was part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. PSN is part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Component(s): 
Updated July 11, 2022