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Press Release

Wholesale Drug Trafficker and Distributor Sentenced to Over 15 Years in Prison

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

BOSTON – The leader of a Brockton-based drug-trafficking organization (DTO) was sentenced on June 1, 2023 for gun and drug offenses committed while on pretrial release for two pending state gun charges.

Kevin Cardoso, 26, of Brockton, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns to 188 months in prison and five years of supervised release. On Feb. 1, 2023, Cardoso pleaded guilty to one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition; one count of possession with intent to distribute over 500 grams of cocaine, over 400 grams of fentanyl and over 500 grams of methamphetamine; and one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute over 500 grams of cocaine, over 400 grams of fentanyl and over 500 grams of methamphetamine. 

Cardoso oversaw a DTO that distributed wholesale quantities of controlled substances, including cocaine, fentanyl and methamphetamine in and around the Brockton area. Multiple locations where DTO members stored, prepared, or distributed narcotics were located during the investigation. Some of those locations were identified based on the electronic location monitoring data from the ankle bracelet Cardoso was wearing at the time while on pretrial release for two pending state gun charges. Specifically, the locations were determined according to the corresponding date and time of drug-trafficking communications Cardoso sent via his Snapchat. Additionally, a food delivery account that Cardoso and his associates utilized similarly revealed a commonality of locations – later determined to be stash locations – where Cardoso was directing food orders.   

During an October 2021 search of a stash location Cardoso operated and managed in Dedham, at least 2,000 grams of cocaine, at least 3,000 grams of fentanyl, at least 5,000 grams of methamphetamine, drug packaging materials, blender parts, multiple respirators, press equipment (including a hydraulic press, press plates and various symbols, logos and emblems for drug-labeling purposes) and approximately $72,000 cash were recovered. 

Additionally in October 2021, during a search of Cardoso’s apartment, a firearm and ammunition, at least 20 cellphones, over $26,000, an Audemars Piguet watch and a diamond pendant with the number “39” were recovered. A number of the seized phones contained drug-trafficking communications between Cardoso and others regarding the supply and/or distribution needs of the DTO’s members and its customer base.  Digital evidence also showed Cardoso instructing others to obtain legal documents from a lawyer’s office for purposes of smuggling drugs into the jail via attorney mail. At the time of Cardoso’s arrest, over $6,000 was recovered from his person and vehicle, as well as three additional cellphones. 

Acting United States Attorney Joshua S. Levy; Joseph Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division; John. E. Mawn Jr., Interim Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; Boston Police Commissioner Michael Cox; Brockton Police Chief Brenda Perez; Bridgewater Police Chief Christopher D. Delmonte; East Bridgewater Police Acting Chief Michael Jenkins; Westport Police Chief Keith A. Pelletier; Dedham Police Chief Michael D’Entremont; Plymouth Police Chief Michael E. Botieri; Newton Police Chief John F Carmichael Jr.; Suffolk County Sheriff Steven W. Tompkins; Bristol County Sheriff Paul Heroux; and Plymouth County Sheriff Joseph D. McDonald made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kaitlin R. O’Donnell of Levy’s Organized Crime & Gang Unit prosecuted the case.

This effort 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 September 6, 2023

Drug Trafficking