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Press Release

Dominican National Sentenced for Fentanyl and Heroin Trafficking

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

BOSTON – A Dominican national was sentenced today in federal court in Boston for heroin and fentanyl possession and distribution charges.

Juan Santos Roque, 43, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns to 63 months in prison and two years of supervised release. In October 2020, Santos Roque pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin and 400 grams or more of fentanyl and one count of possession with intent to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin and 400 grams or more of fentanyl.

In 2019, Santos Roque’s co-defendant, James De La Cruz, arranged for the sale of 10 kilograms of fentanyl and six kilograms of heroin to a confidential informant at a hotel in Peabody. On Oct. 21, 2019, Santos Roque and De La Cruz drove from New York and arrived separately at the meeting location. Santos Roque had stored 16 kilograms of heroin and fentanyl in a hidden compartment in his vehicle. When Santos Roque arrived at the hotel parking lot, he met with the confidential informant and handed over the 16 separate drug packages. Agents then took both men into custody.

De La Cruz pleaded guilty on May 7, 2021 and is scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 6, 2021.

Acting United States Attorney Nathaniel R. Mendell and William S. Walker, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Homeland Security Investigations in Boston made the announcement today. Valuable assistance was provided by the Massachusetts State Police and the Peabody Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen W. Hassink of Mendell’s Narcotics and Money Laundering Unit prosecuted the case. 

Updated May 12, 2021

Drug Trafficking