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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Vermont

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Federal Jury in Rutland Convicts Brooklyn New York Man of Conspiracy to Distribute Heroin and Crack Cocaine in Rutland Area

The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that Joel Joyce (a.k.a. “Prince”), 27, of Brooklyn, New York was convicted of conspiracy to distribute cocaine base and heroin by a federal jury sitting in Rutland on December 23, 2016. The jury also convicted Joyce of possession with intent to distribute 28 grams or more of cocaine base. The minimum term of imprisonment for these offenses is five years and the maximum term of imprisonment is 40 years. There is also a mandatory four-year term of supervised release which begins after the prison term is served.

According to the evidence presented at trial, Joyce would use co-conspirators from Brooklyn, New York to bring heroin and crack cocaine from Brooklyn to the Rutland, Vermont area. Joyce then used drug addicts in the Rutland area to distribute these drugs and collect his money. The government presented evidence that Joyce and his co-conspirators from New York would often stay at the homes of addicts in Rutland and West Rutland and used these homes as a base of operations in which to operate Joyce’s drug trafficking enterprise. Joyce paid these addicts heroin and crack cocaine for assisting him.

The government also presented evidence at trial showing that Joyce made tens of thousands of dollars selling drugs in the Rutland area. The government presented evidence that Joyce often managed by cell phone the drug trafficking operation in Rutland while he was in Brooklyn, New York.

Sentencing in this matter will likely be scheduled for some time in the spring of 2017 before U.S. District Court Judge Geoffrey Crawford sitting in Rutland.

Vermont’s United States Attorney, Eric Miller, noted that the investigation that led to the arrest and conviction of Joyce was jointly conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Vermont State Police Drug Task Force, and the United States Attorney’s Office. “This conviction is the result of state and federal investigators and prosecutors working hand-in-hand to bring a dangerous drug dealer to justice. Mr. Joyce was a significant source of heroin and crack in the Rutland area, and Vermont’s communities are safer as a result of this successful prosecution.”

The United States is represented in this matter by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joe Perella and Jon Ophardt. The defendant is represented by David Williams, Esq. of Burlington.

Drug Trafficking
Updated December 28, 2016