MAR 11 (PORTLAND, Maine) - John J. Arvanitis, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and United States Attorney Thomas E. Delahanty II announced that Efrain Urena, a/k/a "Cheech", of Lawrence, Massachusetts, was sentenced by United States District Judge George Z. Singal to 12 years in prison to be followed by five years of supervised release for conspiracy to distribute heroin. Urena pleaded guilty to the offense on October 9, 2013.
In late 2012 and early 2013, law enforcement agents learned that Urena supervised a family drug trafficking operation in Lawrence that, from 2011 until Urena's arrest in February 2013, distributed heroin to customers in Maine and New Hampshire. On April 24, 2013, a superseding indictment was returned charging Urena and 13 other people with conspiracy to distribute heroin. The investigation revealed that numerous home burglaries and shoplifting crimes were committed by Urena's heroin customers in order to pay for the heroin Urena was supplying.
This case results from a joint investigation conducted by agents with the United States Drug Enforcement Administration; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency; New Hampshire and Maine State Police; the York County Sheriff's Office; the Rochester, New Hampshire Police Department; and the ongoing effort of the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF), a partnership between federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking, weapons trafficking and money laundering organizations, and those primarily responsible for the nation's illegal drug supply.