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BOSTON – A Chelsea man was sentenced today in federal court in Boston for distributing crack cocaine.
Jose Muniz, 28, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Senior Judge Mark L. Wolf to five years in prison and four years of supervised release. In April 2017, Muniz pleaded guilty to two counts of possession with intent to distribute cocaine base and distribution of cocaine base and one count of possession with intent to distribute cocaine base and cocaine.
In 2015 and 2016, a federal investigation identified a network of street gangs, which had created alliances to traffic weapons and drugs throughout Massachusetts and generate violence against rival gang members. Based on the investigation, 53 defendants were indicted in June 2016 on federal firearms and drug charges, including defendants who are allegedly leaders, members, and associates of the 18th Street Gang, the East Side Money Gang and the Boylston Street Gang. These gangs operated primarily in the East Boston, Boston, Chelsea, Brockton, Malden, Revere and Everett areas. During the course of the investigation, over 70 firearms, cocaine, cocaine base (crack), heroin and fentanyl were seized.
During the investigation, Muniz sold cocaine base to a cooperating witness in Chelsea on two separate occasions in July and August of 2015. On Feb. 18, 2016, Muniz was stopped by law enforcement officers in Chelsea, who subsequently seized cocaine base, cocaine, other drugs, and a 9mm handgun from Muniz.
Muniz is one of 13 defendants to plead guilty.
Acting United States Attorney William D. Weinreb; Mickey D. Leadingham, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, Boston Field Division; Michael J. Ferguson, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, New England Field Division; Matthew Etre, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; John Gibbons, U.S. Marshal for the District of Massachusetts; Maura Healey, Attorney General of Massachusetts; Colonel Richard D. McKeon, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; Boston Police Commissioner William Evans; Chelsea Police Chief Brian Kyes; and Brockton Police Chief John Crowley made the announcement today. The U.S. Attorney’s Office also acknowledges the assistance of the Suffolk and Middlesex County Sheriff Departments and the Malden, Revere and Everett Police Departments.
The details contained in the charging documents are allegations and the remaining defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.