Lowell Man Pleads Guilty to Selling Fentanyl
BOSTON -- A Lowell man arrested during a federal drug sweep in the Lawrence area last fall pleaded guilty on charges related to distributing fentanyl, federal authorities announced Tuesday.
Edilberto Calle-Alvarez, 24, was one of dozens of defendants charged with federal and state offenses on October 4 in a drug firearms and immigration sweep.
Calle-Alvarez, then-23, was accused of selling 20 grams of fentanyl to an undercover police officer during the investigation, according to the Department of Justice. He pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute fentanyl and distribution and possession with intent to distribute fentanyl in federal court in Boston.
U.S. District Court Judge Leo T. Sorokin deferred acceptance of the plea until sentencing, which is scheduled for April 22.
Both charges carry a sentence of no greater than 20 years in prison with a minimum of three years to a lifetime of supervised release, according to a press release. Each charge may also carry a fine of up to $1 million.
The arrests were part of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhood Initiative. The initiative aims to “bring together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime,” according to the Department of Justice.
In Lawrence these arrests were the culmination of a number of federal investigations called Operation Law and Order, which targeted repeat offenders or people with criminal records who were in the country illegally.
At the time of the arrests, 13 criminal aliens were arrested by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to be processed for removal. Another 14 were at large.
District of Massachusetts U. S. Attorney Andrew Lelling’s Office, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration New England Division Brian Boyle and Lowell Police Superintendent Raymond Kelly Richardson made a joint announcement regarding the plea.