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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Rhode Island

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Providence Felon Sentenced on Drug, Firearm Charges

PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Thealeah Duopu, 40, of Providence, was sentenced today to 72 months in federal prison for trafficking crack cocaine and being a felon in possession of a firearm, announced United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha and Mickey D. Leadingham, Special Agent in Charge of the Boston Field Division of ATF.

At sentencing, U.S. District Court Chief Judge William E. Smith also ordered Duopu to serve 4 years supervised release upon completion of his prison term. Duopu pleaded guilty on June 24, 2016, to one count of possession with the intent to distribute 28 grams or more of crack cocaine, one count of distribution of 28 grams or more of crack cocaine, three counts of distribution of crack cocaine, and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm.

According to court records and information presented to the court, in October and November 2015, an ATF Task Force investigation of Duopu’s drug trafficking activities included at least four purchases of crack cocaine by an ATF undercover Task Force agent. The purchases ranged in amounts of between 8 and 52 grams, for between $375 and $3,200.

On November 12, 2015, Duopu was arrested by ATF Task Force agents as he left his Providence residence to meet with an undercover agent for a previously arranged delivery of crack cocaine. Agents seized nearly 54 grams of crack cocaine and $538 in cash from Duopu. A court authorized search of Duopu’s residence which immediately followed his arrest resulted in the seizure of more than 67 grams of crack cocaine, nearly $20,300 dollars in cash and a loaded semi-automatic firearm.

During the course of the investigation, law enforcement seized from Duopu more than 200 grams of crack cocaine and nearly $21,000 in cash.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Milind M. Shah, with the assistance of Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul F. Daly, Jr.

The Pawtucket Police Department and the Providence Arson Squad assisted the ATF Task Force in the investigation of this matter. The ATF Task Force is comprised of agents and officers from ATF; the Providence, Cranston and Central Falls Police Departments; and the Special Investigations Unit at the Rhode Island Department of Corrections.

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Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime
Component(s): 
Press Release Number: 
16-92
Updated September 14, 2016