Drug Enforcement Administration

New York

Raymond P. Donovan, Special Agent in Charge

September 20, 2018

Contact: Erin Mulvey

Phone Number: (212) 337-2906

Butyryl fentanyl dealer pleads guilty

BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. and Special Agent in Charge James Hunt, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), New York Division announced today that Jose Alvarez, 26, of Buffalo, N.Y., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Court Judge Lawrence J. Vilardo to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, butyryl fentanyl.  The charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $1,000,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Brendan T. Cullinane, who is handling the case, stated that on July 27, 2017, Drug Enforcement Administration and Homeland Security Investigations Special Agents executed a search warrant on Alvarez’s vehicle. During the search, agents recovered 20 bags of butyryl fentanyl, a Schedule I controlled substance. The investigation determined that the defendant, along with his co-defendants, were staying at a hotel and casino located in Salamanca. Subsequently, a search warrant was executed in their hotel room, where agents recovered another 196 bags of butyryl fentanyl. Alvarez also admitted selling butyryl fentanyl on three prior occasions in Salamanca in May and July of 2017.

The plea is the result of an investigation by the DEA Buffalo Resident Office; Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations; the NYS State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation; and the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force.

Sentencing is scheduled before Judge Vilardo for Jan. 31, 2019, at 10:30 a.m.

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