Puerto Rican Man Gets 6+ Years in Prison for Selling Heroin in Leominster

Puerto Rican Man Gets 6+ Years in Prison for Selling Heroin in Leominster

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WORCESTER – A 50-year-old Puerto Rican man was sentenced on Monday in federal court in Worcester to more than six years in prison for dealing and being in possession of more than 100 grams of heroin.

Ivan Cruz-Rivera, 50, of Dorado, P.R., was sentenced to 76 months in prison and four years of supervised release.

In Dec. 2018, Cruz-Rivera and co-defendant Carlos Jimenez, 52, of Englishtown, N.J., were each convicted following a 12-day trial on charges of possession with intent to distribute heroin and distribution of more than 100 grams of heroin, and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute heroin and to distribute heroin. 

Jimenez is scheduled to be sentenced on Wednesday, April 24, 2019.

According to the Dept. of Justice, on Oct. 4, 2013, federal agents witnessed Cruz-Rivera and Jimenez in a Lexus with New Jersey plates entering a garage on Union Street in Leominster and then leaving the property 90 minutes later. 

After the pair left the property, an individual at the garage sold heroin to a cooperating source for $7,500. 

Agents followed Cruz-Rivera and Jimenez into Sturbridge where they pulled the pair over after a traffic violation. According to the DOJ, when questioned about the purpose of the trip to Massachusetts, Jimenez gave conflicting answers and said that they had just come from Lawrence. Jimenez denied having weapons or drugs in the car, but indicated that his passenger had some cash in the car.

During questioning, Cruz-Rivera finally admitted that there was $1,000 in the car. However, after Jimenez consented to a vehicle search, $44,000 in a black bag was recovered. 

The cash was seized, but Jimenez and Cruz-Rivera were released.

Subsequently, a cooperating witness provided law enforcement with information regarding Jimenez and Cruz-Rivera’s drug trafficking activity. In approximately 2012, the cooperating witness began purchasing heroin from Cruz-Rivera. 

On Oct. 4, 2013, Jimenez told the cooperator that he drove for the drug delivery because it was less likely that he would get in trouble if they were pulled over because he was a firefighter.

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    Patrick Sargent is the founder and lead reporter for ThisWeekinWorcester.com. He was born and raised on Grafton Hill and is a graduate of Holy Name high school and Worcester State University. Over the past two years, he worked as a contributing reporter for the Worcester Sun. Previous to that, over the course of several years, he had stints with GoLocalWorcester, Worcester Magazine, the Leominster Champion and Fitchburg Pride. He is the owner of Sargent Media, LLC and can be contacted at [email protected] or 774-232-1223.