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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Lowell Man Agrees to Plead Guilty to Fentanyl Trafficking

BOSTON – A Lowell man agreed to plead guilty yesterday in federal court in Boston to distributing fentanyl.

Edilberto Calle-Alvarez, 24, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute fentanyl and distribution and possession with intent to distribute fentanyl. U.S. District Court Judge Leo T. Sorokin deferred acceptance of the plea until sentencing, which is scheduled for April 22, 2019.

Calle-Alvarez was arrested on Oct. 4, 2018, along with dozens of others as part of a federal drug, firearms, and immigration sweep in and around the City of Lawrence. On Aug. 2, 2018, Calle-Alvarez sold approximately 20 grams of fentanyl to an undercover police officer as part of the investigation. The arrests were part of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhood Initiative (PSN), which aims to bring together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime.

The charges of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute fentanyl and distribution and possession with intent to distribute fentanyl each carry a sentence of no greater than 20 years in prison, a minimum of three years and up to a lifetime of supervised release, and a fine of up to $1 million. 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, New England Division; and Lowell Police Superintendent Raymond Kelly Richardson made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Philip Cheng of Lelling’s Criminal Division is prosecuting the case.

Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Component(s): 
Updated January 29, 2019