News Release
March 9, 2007

Fitchburg Felon Sentenced to Thirty
Years on Federal Drug and Gun Charges

MAR 9 -- WORCESTER, MA - A Fitchburg man was sentenced today to thirty years in federal prison following his trial November 2006, conviction on drug and firearms charges.

June W. Stansbury, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in New England; United States Attorney Michael J. Sullivan; Joseph Early, Jr., Worcester County District Attorney; and Edward F. Cronin, Chief of the Fitchburg Police Department, announced that U.S. District Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV found ANDRE ROSADO, a/k/a “Dre,” age 26, formerly of Fitchburg, Massachusetts, to be a career offender and sentenced him to 30 years in prison, to be followed by 8 years of supervised release. On November 16, 2006, a trial jury convicted ROSADO of distributing cocaine base, possessing with intent to distribute cocaine base, possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Evidence presented during the four-day trial proved that on February 23, 2005, federal undercover DEA agents working jointly with Fitchburg Police officers purchased an ounce of crack cocaine from ROSADO. After obtaining an arrest warrant, investigators located ROSADO on April 6, 2005, and attempted to arrest him. ROSADO fled in a car carrying an additional 44 grams of crack and two firearms. ROSADO raced through residential Fitchburg neighborhoods before crashing the car into a wall at the base of a house located in the area of Spruce and Hale Streets. ROSADO then jumped out of the car with a firearm in his hand, cut through some backyards before being apprehended by investigators.

At an earlier hearing, prosecutors presented evidence that ROSADO had been convicted in 1997 of cocaine distribution and conspiracy to commit murder. Federal law prohibits previously convicted felons from possessing firearms or ammunition.

ROSADO was one of several individuals charged in May of 2005 in a series of cases investigated by the DEA's Mobile Enforcement Team ("MET") which had been working in cooperation with the Fitchburg Police Department and the North Worcester Drug Task Force since September, 2004. Their focus was on the distribution of various controlled substances, including cocaine, crack, heroin and ecstasy in Fitchburg and surrounding areas. As a result of their cooperative efforts, a total of forty individuals were charged either in federal or state court (eleven federal and twenty-nine state).

The Mobile Enforcement Team program was created by the DEA in early 1995 to assist local law enforcement in responding to the overwhelming problem of drug-related crime that plagues neighborhoods and communities throughout the United States. The challenges facing law enforcement today are daunting. The increasing sophistication of drug-trafficking organizations make drug law enforcement more difficult than ever before. The MET program helps local law enforcement entities attack drug organizations in their neighborhoods and restores a safer environment for the residents of these communities.

MET Agents assist local law enforcement officers in the following ways:

-Identifying major drug traffickers and organizations.
-Collecting, analyzing, and sharing intelligence with state and local counterparts.
-Cultivating investigations against drug offenders and gangs.
-Arresting drug traffickers.
-Seizing the assets of drug offenders and gangs.
-Providing support to federal, state, and local prosecutors.

Local police chiefs, county sheriffs, and state and local prosecutors who feel that there is a need for MET assistance in their jurisdiction can submit a written request to the DEA Special Agent in Charge responsible for their particular area. Upon acceptance of a request, the MET in that jurisdiction sends a pre-deployment assessment team consisting of two to three agents to meet with the requesting official and other cooperating local law enforcement agencies in order to evaluate the problem. Upon approval, the entire MET is deployed to that city to begin investigative activity against the primary drug trafficking individuals and organizations identified in the pre-deployment assessment.

The case was investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's Mobile Enforcement Team, the Fitchburg Police Department, the North Worcester County Drug Task Force, and Worcester County District Attorney John J. Conte's Office. They received assistance from the Worcester County Sheriff’s Department, and the U.S. Marshal’s Service.