MAY 14 (PROVIDENCE, R.I.) – John J. Arvanitis, Special Agent in Charge of DEA’s New England Field Division; United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha; Providence Public Safety Commissioner Steven M. Paré; Providence Police Chief Colonel Hugh T. Clements, Jr. and Rhode Island Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin announced Jorge Daniel Estrada of Providence, R.I., and Angel Feliz of Dorchester, Mass., have been sentenced to lengthy federal prison sentences in connection with the seizure in October 2012 of 19 kilos of heroin, the largest single seizure in Rhode Island.
The seizure of the heroin, valued at approximately $4.5 million, and the arrest of Estrada and Feliz, was prompted by information developed by Providence Police detectives during an on-going investigation into street-level drug dealing. A joint investigation by Providence Police and the DEA Drug Task Force resulted in the seizure of the heroin and the arrest of Estrada and Feliz.
Estrada, who pleaded guilty on January 29, 2013, to one count of possession with the intent to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin, was sentenced on Monday by U.S. District Court Chief Judge Mary M. Lisi to 180 months in federal prison, to be followed by lifetime supervised release.
Feliz, who pleaded guilty on January 29, 2013, to one count of attempting to possess with the intent to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin, was sentenced on May 10, 2013, by U.S. District Court Chief Judge Mary M. Lisi to 70 months in federal prison, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release.
According to information presented to the court, an individual previously arrested by Providence Police for the alleged possession of narcotics agreed to cooperate with law enforcement to arrange controlled deliveries of heroin. Two deliveries of a kilo of heroin took place on the evening of October 23, 2012, and on the following afternoon, witnessed by a team of law enforcement agents and officers from the DEA Drug Task Force and Providence Police. The drugs were quickly seized by law enforcement.
Later in the day on October 24, 2012, the informant received a call and was provided with a location to meet with a person who would be traveling from Massachusetts to Rhode Island to pick-up the two kilos of heroin. Law enforcement provided the informant with two fake kilos of heroin and watched as the delivery was made.
A search of Estrada’s Providence residence resulted in the seizure of an additional 17 kilos of heroin, a drug ledger, approximately $4,000 in cash, a money counter, various items used in the packaging of heroin, ammunition, and a sophisticated surveillance system. In addition, Estrada possessed a loaded handgun, ski mask and gloves, which were located in a sophisticated hidden compartment in the first vehicle used by Estrada to deliver a kilogram of heroin.