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Press Release

Woonsocket Resident Pleads Guilty to Drug Trafficking, Firearm Charges

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

PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Miguel Colon, 55, of Woonsocket, pleaded guilty in federal court in Providence today to charges of trafficking heroin and cocaine, and to carrying a firearm in furtherance of his drug trafficking activities. Colon was arrested in April 2015 by federal, state and local law enforcement upon his return to New England from Texas and Florida with three kilos of cocaine and a loaded firearm found stashed inside a sophisticated hydraulically-controlled hidden compartment inside his vehicle. A subsequent court authorized search of self-storage units rented by Colon resulted in the seizure of nearly 900 grams of heroin.

Appearing before U.S. District Court Chief Judge William E. Smith, Colon pleaded guilty to possession with the intent to distribute 100 grams of more of heroin, possession with the intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine, being a felon in possession of a firearm and carrying a firearm during a drug trafficking crime.

Colon’s guilty plea is announced by United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha; Woonsocket Police Chief Thomas S. Carey; Providence Police Chief Colonel Hugh T. Clements, Jr.; Colonel Steven G. O’Donnell, Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police; and Michael J. Ferguson, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA’s New England Field Division.

According to court documents and information presented to the court, Woonsocket and Providence Police detectives, independent of one another, developed information this past winter that approximately once a month Miguel Colon traveled by vehicle to Texas and/or Florida to obtain large amounts of cocaine and/or heroin, which he then transported back to Rhode Island to distribute. In late April, detectives and officers from the Providence and Woonsocket Police Departments developed information that Colon was on a drug run to Texas and Florida. The investigation determined that Colon and a female companion would be arriving back into Rhode Island in the early morning hours of April 27, 2015.

According to court documents and information presented to the court, in the early morning hours of April 27, numerous local, state and federal unmarked law enforcement vehicles were posted along Route 95 N from the Connecticut border and northward. Law enforcement spotted Colon’s vehicle at about 4:00AM, and followed the vehicle until it came to a stop in a parking lot of a motel in North Attleboro, Mass. Law enforcement quickly surrounded the vehicle and removed Colon. A Rhode Island State Police K-9 indicated the presence of narcotics inside the vehicle.

With the assistance of North Attleboro and Massachusetts State Police, the vehicle was removed to the North Attleboro Police Department where a Massachusetts court authorized search of the vehicle resulted in the discovery of three kilos of cocaine, approximately one pound of marijuana and a loaded semi-automatic firearm inside a sophisticated hydraulically-controlled hidden compartment.

Also located in the vehicle were keys to self-storage units at a Woonsocket storage facility. A Rhode Island court authorized search of two storage units rented by Colon at the Woonsocket storage facility resulted in the seizure of approximately 895 grams of heroin, and various items used in the packaging and distribution of drugs.

A court authorized search of Colon’s residence resulted in the seizure of .380 caliber live ammunition, drug ledgers with amounts of money listed next to names - some of the names on the ledgers were known to Woonsocket Police narcotics detectives as drug dealers in the City of Woonsocket, several small seedling sized marijuana plants and a State of Rhode Island marijuana caregiver card issued to Colon.

Colon, who has been detained in federal custody since his arrest, is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Court Chief Judge William E. Smith on January 14, 2016.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gerard B. Sullivan.

Updated October 28, 2015

Drug Trafficking
Press Release Number: 15-96