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New York Man Pleads Guilty to Drug Trafficking Conspiracy and Firearms Charges

JAN 06 (PORTLAND, Maine) – Michael J. Ferguson Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and United States Attorney Thomas E. Delahanty II announced that Malcolm Cowart, a/k/a “Prince”, 37, of Harlem, New York, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a kilogram or more of heroin, cocaine base, and oxycodone and to discharging a firearm during and in furtherance of that drug trafficking conspiracy.

According to court records, from about November 2011 until March 2014, Cowart conspired with others to distribute heroin, cocaine base, and oxycodone in Portland. The drugs were brought from the New York area by managers of the drug conspiracy.  The managers stayed with Portland residents who were paid drugs and money for allowing the conspirators to use their apartments to distribute drugs.  Managers dispatched runners to distribute the drugs throughout the Portland area.

In March 2013, Cowart had a falling out with Wayman Sparrow that led to the two of them engaging in a shootout inside the Lafayette Arms Apartments in Portland.  In March 2014, agents with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency (“MDEA”) searched an apartment in Portland, encountered a manager fleeing out the back door, and seized about $25,000 in drug proceeds from him.  Later that day, agents apprehended another manager traveling by bus from New York and seized about 400 grams of heroin from her.  Cowart faces between 20 and 25 years in prison, up to five years of supervised release and a $10,000,000 fine. He will be sentenced after the completion of a presentence investigation report by the U.S. Probation Office.  This is the ninth federal conviction arising from this investigation; numerous state convictions of other individuals have also arisen from this investigation.  

This joint investigation was conducted by the DEA, the MDEA and the Portland Police Department, with valuable assistance provided by Maine State Police Crime Laboratory and the Cumberland County District Attorney’s Office.


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