Leader of Drug Trafficking and Money Laundering Organization with Ties to Mexican Cartel Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison
BOSTON – A Maine man pleaded guilty today in federal court in Worcester to his role in a drug trafficking conspiracy.
Thomas Walker, 43, of Pemaquid, Maine, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute heroin and cocaine, specifically cocaine. U.S. District Court Judge Timothy S. Hillman scheduled sentencing for Aug. 28, 2018. In 2017, Walker and four others, Vito Nuzzolilo, of Worcester; Kristin Little, of Worcester; Melissa Rock, of Pemaquid, Maine; and Ricardo Ortega-Vasquez, a Dominican national residing in New York City, were indicted for their roles in the conspiracy.
According to court documents, a court-authorized wiretap intercepted Rock and Walker speaking with Nuzzolilo about purchasing cocaine for re-distribution in Maine. On April 10, 2017, Rock contacted Nuzzolilo to ask if he would “front” a quantity of cocaine for Walker; she then traveled to Nuzzolilo’s apartment in Worcester. On April 15, 2017, Walker arranged to obtain cocaine from Nuzzolilo’s apartment, and Nuzzolilo directed Little to provide two ounces of cocaine to Walker. On April 23, 2017, Walker again visited Nuzzolilo’s apartment to obtain cocaine. On April 27, 2017, Walker spoke with Nuzzolilo about obtaining additional cocaine, promising that his “workers” had cash to cover it. Rock and Walker then traveled to Nuzzolilo’s Worcester apartment, and, after leaving the apartment, were stopped by law enforcement and found in possession of more than 50 grams of cocaine.
Walker faces a sentence of up to 40 years in prison, a minimum of four years and up to a lifetime of supervised release, and a fine of $5 million. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Rock, Little, and Ortega-Vasquez have also pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing. The remaining defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Brian D. Boyle, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, New England Field Division; and Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bill Abely of Lelling’s Worcester Branch Office is prosecuting the case.