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Convicted Felon Gets 77 Months for Distributing Heroin

Authorities say the New London man was selling the drug throughout southeastern Connecticut.

Patch File Photo
Patch File Photo
Another New London man sentenced to prison Wednesday, as justice continues to be served in the massive investigation into the large-scale trafficking of heroin and cocaine into southeastern Connecticut.

Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced Thursday that Eddie Rodriguez, also known as “Joel,” 30, was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge Janet Bond Arterton in New Haven to 77 months of imprisonment, followed by four years of supervised release, for distributing heroin.

In early 2012, Homeland Security Investigations (“HSI”), the U.S. Secret Service and the New London Police Department initiated an investigation to combat the large-scale trafficking of heroin and cocaine from the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico into and around southeastern Connecticut.

The investigation revealed that Luis Ariel Capellan Maldonado, also known as “Ariel,” and his associates were receiving heroin from sources in the Dominican Republic and distributing it throughout New London County. 

Rodriguez purchased heroin from Maldonado’s associate and sold the drug to his own customers, according to court documents.

Rodriguez, who has several prior felony convictions, has been detained since his arrest on April 3, 2013. On Jan. 2, 2014, he pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin.

More than 100 individuals have been charged with federal and state offenses as a result of this investigation. Maldonado has pleaded guilty and awaits sentencing.

This matter is being investigated by Homeland Security Investigations; U.S. Secret Service; U.S. Postal Inspection Service; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Air and Marine; Connecticut State Police; New London Police Department, Norwich Police Department, Waterford Police Department, Groton Town Police Department, East Lyme Police Department and Putnam Police Department. 

The United States Marshals Service; ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations; Drug Enforcement Administration; HSI Assistant Attaché, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; HSI Arecibo, Puerto Rico Resident Office;  Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation; Connecticut Department of Correction, Parole and Community Services; and the Groton City, Willimantic, New Haven and Bristol Police Departments have provided valuable assistance to the investigation.

The federal case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Alina P. Reynolds, Sarah P. Karwan and Henry K. Kopel. The state cases are being prosecuted by the State’s Attorney for the New London Judicial District and Senior Assistant State’s Attorneys Paul Narducci and Stephen Carney.

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