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New London man to serve three years for selling cocaine from auto shop

By Karen Florin

Publication: theday.com

Published February 18. 2014 4:00PM   Updated February 18. 2014 4:52PM

New London - A New London man who was selling cocaine from his auto shop on Westwood Avenue was sentenced today to three years in federal prison.

Frankie Rivera, 32, was identified as a street-level distributor of powder cocaine during an investigation that led to last year’s major investigation into cocaine and heroin trafficking in the New London area.

Authorities said Rivera, and occasionally some of his employees, sold quantities of cocaine out of the “PR Speedshop,” an auto-repair shop that Rivera owned.

Rivera, who has been detained since he was arrested in April 2013, had pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine. He will be on probation for five years following his release from prison.

Rivera was distributing cocaine he obtained from Pedro Rivera, also known as “Cheito,” of Groton, according to the government. “Cheito” allegedly obtained kilograms of cocaine regularly from sources in Puerto Rico.

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 assistance to the investigation.

The federal case is being prosecuted by assistant U.S. 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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