Two men sentenced in heroin trafficking conspiracy

Two men sentenced in heroin trafficking conspiracy

PROVIDENCE - Luis Marte, 34, of Pawtucket, and Luis Fernandez, 26, of Providence, were sentenced to lengthy federal prison terms on Tuesday, July 23, for conspiring to possess and possessing with the intent to distribute more than 800 grams of heroin, according to U.S. Attorney Peter Neronha and Cranston Police Chief Marco Palombo Jr.

U.S. District Court Chief Judge Mary Lisi sentenced Marte to 70 months imprisonment to be followed by five years of supervised release. Fernandez was sentenced by Chief Judge Mary Lisi to 57 months imprisonment to be followed by five years supervised release.

In April, Marte and Fernandez pleaded guilty as charged in a federal indictment to one count each of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin and possession with the intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin.

According to information presented to the court, on Jan. 3, Cranston Police patrol officers observed a vehicle bearing an expired registration plate. While following the vehicle, the officers observed the driver commit traffic violations. They followed the vehicle to an apartment complex parking lot.

As the driver and passenger were exiting the vehicle at the apartment complex, the officers ordered them to remain inside. The driver, Luis Fernandez, returned to the vehicle while the passenger, Luis Marte, remained outside the vehicle holding a brown paper bag. As officers gave Marte commands he dropped the bag, which officers quickly recovered. Inside the bag, officers discovered 696.4 grams of heroin. The pair refused to divulge to the officers why they had driven to the apartment complex.

At the Cranston police station, officers located keys on both defendants to an apartment at the complex where they were arrested. Cranston police conducted an authorized search of the apartment where they seized an additional 111.9 grams of heroin and numerous items used in the packaging and distribution of heroin, including thousands of blue and pink “stamp” bags commonly used to package heroin.

The defendants have been detained since their arrest.

The cases were prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sandra Hebert.