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Press Release

Final Defendant in Nationwide Methamphetamine Trafficking Ring Pleads Guilty

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Massachusetts
Hundreds of pounds of pure methamphetamine seized

BOSTON – The final member of a large-scale nationwide methamphetamine trafficking ring has been convicted. Throughout the investigation over 160 pounds of pure methamphetamine, as well as an AK-47, a Glock with no serial number, two loaded Smith & Wesson handguns, and over 4,200 rounds of ammunition were seized. An illegal marijuana grow operation with hundreds of marijuana plants was also dismantled.

Brian Keleman, 55, of Pascoag, R.I., pleaded guilty on June 21, 2024 to two counts of the second superseding indictment charging him with conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine and money laundering conspiracy. U.S. District Court Judge Nathaniel M. Gorton scheduled sentencing for Sept. 17, 2024.

“This final conviction represents the culmination of a very important investigation involving over 150 pounds of methamphetamine and high-powered weapons. The dismantling of this organization underscores that federal, state and local law enforcement is doing everything in our power to get dangerous drugs off our streets, protect our community and hold those accountable who continue pump these deadly substances onto our streets,” said Acting United States Attorney Joshua S. Levy.

“With Brian Keleman’s conviction, Operation Ice Cats has officially crushed a large-scale, multi-state drug trafficking organization that brought over 160 pounds of highly addictive meth to New England,” said Jodi Cohen, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division. “The FBI and our partners will continue to investigate and dismantle drug trafficking operations like this and bring those involved to justice, as we work to make our communities safer."

“As methamphetamine seizures are on the rise, DEA stands committed to keeping this highly addictive drug out of Massachusetts,” said Stephen Belleau, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, New England Field Division. “Drug trafficking, along with the violence that all too often accompanies it, is a serious threat to the safety and security of our communities. This should serve as a warning to those who attempt to distribute this poison in Massachusetts.”

Keleman was charged in a superseding indictment in September 2021 with conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine. The superseding indictment also charged 10 other defendants with controlled substance offenses, firearm offenses, and money laundering offenses.  

In approximately October 2020, investigators received information about drug trafficking activities of a large-scale methamphetamine supplier in the Boston area. In late 2020, investigators identified Reshat Alkayisi as a large-scale methamphetamine trafficker, who distributed multi-pound quantities to customers throughout the New England area. Keleman worked for Alkayisi at his illegal marijuana grow operation and also delivered methamphetamine to some of Alkayisi’s regular methamphetamine customers who further distributed that methamphetamine throughout New England. 

Between April and May 2021, Keleman delivered over 21 pounds (nine kilograms) of pure methamphetamine to Alkayisi’s customers. On June 1, 2021, four packages were seized containing a total of approximately 100 pounds (over 45 kilograms) of 100% pure methamphetamine from Keleman that he picked up on behalf of Alkayisi from a UPS store in Rhode Island. 

Keleman is the 11th and final defendant in the case to plead guilty. The remaining 10 co-defendants are awaiting sentencing. 

The charge of conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine to which Keleman pleaded guilty provides for a sentence of up to life in prison, a minimum of three years of supervised release and a maximum of a term of supervised release of life and a fine of up to $10 million. The charge of money laundering conspiracy provides for up to 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $500,000 or twice the amount of laundered funds, whichever is greater. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and statutes which govern the determination of a sentence in a criminal case.

Acting U.S. Attorney Levy; FBI SAC Cohen; and DEA Acting SAC Belleau made the announcement. Valuable assistance was provided by the Massachusetts Department of Correction; Norfolk County Sherriff’s Office; and Concord, Hudson, Peabody, Reading, Watertown and Waltham Police Departments. Assistance was also provided by the Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Maine State Police. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Alathea Porter and Katherine Ferguson of the Criminal Division are prosecuting the case.

This case is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at

Updated June 24, 2024

Drug Trafficking