January 27, 2017
Contact: SA Timothy Desmond
Phone Number: (617) 557-2100
Rhode Island Man Pleads Guilty To Trafficking Heroin And Cocaine
Cranston Police, DEA seized 6,600 packets of fentanyl-laced heroin
JAN 27 - PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Michael Bermudez, aka “Michael J. Morales,” 35, of Cranston, Rhode Island, pleaded guilty in federal court in Providence today to trafficking heroin laced with fentanyl and trafficking cocaine. Michael J. Ferguson Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England, United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha, and Cranston Police Chief Colonel Michael J. Winquist announced the plea jointly.
Appearing before U.S. District Court John J. McConnell, Jr., Bermudez pleaded guilty as charged in a federal indictment to one count each of possession of 100 grams or more of heroin with the intent to distribute and possession of cocaine with the intent to distribute.
According to court documents and information presented to the court, on October 6, 2016, Cranston Police Department detectives, with the assistance of agents from the Rhode Island DEA Drug Task Force, executed a court-authorized search of Bermudez’s residence. The search resulted in the seizure of nearly 140 grams of heroin laced with fentanyl packed into approximately 6,600 packets, and approximately 153 grams of cocaine.
The search warrant was authorized by the court during an investigation into Bermudez’s drug trafficking activities, which included multiple controlled purchases of heroin from Bermudez. Bermudez was convicted in U.S. District Court in 2009 on fraud charges. At the time of his arrest in this matter, Bermudez was on state probation, having been convicted in Rhode Island Superior Court in September 2015 on drug trafficking charges. Bermudez, who has been detained in federal custody since his arrest on October 6, 2016, is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., on April 12, 2017.
Possession of 100 grams or more of heroin with the intent to distribute is punishable by statutory penalties of 40 years imprisonment, with a mandatory minimum term of 5 years imprisonment; a fine of up to $ 5,000,000; and a term of supervised release of up to life. Possession of cocaine with the intent to distribute is punishable by statutory penalties of up to 20 years imprisonment; a fine of $1,000,000; a term of supervised release of up to life, with a mandatory term of 3 years.