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Press Release

Texas Man Pleads Guilty to Drug Conspiracy

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

BOSTON – A Texas man involved in a Lawrence-based fentanyl, heroin, and cocaine trafficking scheme pleaded guilty today in federal court in Boston.


Joel Jahamal Rougeau, 41, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute fentanyl, heroin, and cocaine. U.S. District Court Chief Judge Patti B. Saris scheduled sentencing for March 7, 2018.  In July 2015, Rougeau and three co-defendants, Jerri Martinez-Tejeda, 31, of Lawrence; Yoelly Carmenatty, 27, of Lawrence; and Lily Solis, 28, of Texas, were charged in a criminal complaint.


In March 2014, an investigation into a drug trafficking organization operating in Massachusetts, California and elsewhere led law enforcement to Martinez-Tejeda. In late May or early June 2015, Martinez-Tejeda hired Rougeau and Solis to pick up nine kilograms of narcotics in California and transport them to the Northeast. On June 4, 2015, law enforcement in Oklahoma intercepted Rougeau and Solis transporting nine kilograms of fentanyl to Martinez-Tejeda and his partner, Carmenatty, in Lawrence for distribution.


In June 2016, Solis was sentenced to 33 months in prison; in October 2016, Martinez-Tejeda was sentenced to 292 months in prison; and in January 2017, Carmenatty was sentenced to six years in prison. 


The charge provides for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, a minimum of three years and up to a lifetime of supervised release, and a fine of $1 million. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.


Acting United States Attorney William D. Weinreb and Michael J. Ferguson, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, New England Field Division, made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas E. Kanwit of Weinreb’s Criminal Division is prosecuting the case.

Updated November 21, 2017

Drug Trafficking