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Massachusetts Woman Pleads Guilty to Fentanyl Distribution Conspiracy

FEB 29 (CONCORD, N.H.) – Bicky Zapata-Nivar, 29, a citizen of the Dominican Republic residing in Lawrence, Massachusetts, pleaded guilty in United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire to conspiring to distribute the Schedule II controlled substance fentanyl, announced Michael J. Ferguson Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and United States Attorney Emily Gray Rice.

During the spring and summer of 2015, law enforcement officers investigated a drug trafficking organization operating in Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. As part of the investigation, cooperating individuals and an undercover law enforcement officer purchased approximately 290 grams of fentanyl from members of the organization. On September 17, 2015, the Drug Enforcement Administration executed search warrants at three residences in Lawrence, Massachusetts associated with the organization. In one residence, officers located the defendant and her minor child in a bedroom. When the defendant heard law enforcement enter, she attempted to hide a suitcase containing drugs and packaging materials under a bed. The suitcase contained approximately 246 grams of a mixture containing the controlled substance fentanyl, an instrument used to compress drugs into ten-gram quantities for sale, blenders, and other packaging materials. Earlier that day, in the same bedroom, the defendant had packaged loose fentanyl for her co-conspirators to sell. The defendant admitted that she packaged drugs for members of this drug trafficking organization on prior occasions and was paid for doing so. A search warrant was also executed at the defendant’s residence where an additional quantity of suspected fentanyl was found, though lab results have not yet confirmed the nature of that substance.

Zapata-Nivar will be detained pending sentencing, which is presently scheduled for June 8, 2016 at 10:00 a.m. The statutory maximum sentence for this offense is 40 years in prison and criminal fines of up to $5,000,000. Zapata-Nivar’s actual sentence will be determined by the court at sentencing after a presentence investigation report is completed.

The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration.


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