FEB 24 (Burlington, Vt.) - John J. Arvanitis, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that Randy Ray Rivera, 35, of Springfield, Massachusetts was sentenced to 144 months in prison, having pled guilty to the charge of conspiracy to distribute 280 grams or more of cocaine base. United States District Judge William K. Sessions III, sitting in Burlington, also sentenced Rivera to five years of supervised release.
Court records show that Rivera, who goes by the alias “Melvin,” sold large quantities of crack cocaine to Vermonters from about late 2009 through his arrest in early 2013. Rivera sold the crack in Springfield to three different individuals from the
Burlington area, who then transported it to Vermont and redistributed it here to dozens of customers.
Rivera’s drug runners made regular trips to Springfield to purchase crack, sometimes picking up narcotics from him multiple times per week. The amounts they transported ranged from about 3-25 ounces per trip. Law enforcement arrested Rivera in Springfield on January 4, 2013, on his way to sell 20 ounces of crack cocaine for $22,500 to a customer who had begun working as a confidential informant. Court records also show that Rivera carried a loaded semiautomatic handgun during the conspiracy period.
Rivera came to sentencing with a series of prior narcotics trafficking convictions from Massachusetts, as well a prior felony firearms offense. For his crime, Rivera faced a maximum penalty of life in prison. In sentencing Rivera, Judge Sessions noted the seriousness of the offense and the large quantities of crack cocaine it involved.
The investigation was a collaborative effort of the Vermont State Police, the Drug Enforcement Administration in Vermont and Massachusetts, and the Bureau of Alcohol,Tobacco, and Firearms.