Woonsocket man faces $1 million in fines on drug charges

Woonsocket man faces $1 million in fines on drug charges

PROVIDENCE - A federal grand jury in Providence last week returned a five-count indictment charging Alfredo Balestier-Sanchez, 32, of Woonsocket, with trafficking heroin, fentanyl, morphine and codeine, announced United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha, Woonsocket Police Chief Thomas S. Carey and John J. Arvanitis, special agent in charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration's New England field division.

Sanchez was arrested March 4, 2013, by members of the Woonsocket Police Department and the Rhode Island DEA's Drug Task Force following a one-month investigation into Sanchez's alleged drug trafficking activities.

According to court documents, it is alleged that several undercover drug purchases from Sanchez and a court authorized search of his Woonsocket residence resulted in the seizure of numerous packets containing various mixtures of fentanyl, heroin, morphine and codeine.

The indictment charges Sanchez with two counts of distribution of fentanyl; one count of distribution of a mixture containing heroin and fentanyl; one count of possession with the intent to distribute a mixture containing heroin and fentanyl; and one count of distribution of a mixture containing heroin, morphine and codeine.

If convicted, Sanchez faces statutory sentences of up to 20 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $1 million on each of the five charges contained in the indictment, according to officials.

An arraignment date has not yet been scheduled for Sanchez who has been detained in federal custody since his arrest.