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Hamden Man Sentenced to 5 Years in Federal Prison for Distributing Heroin and Crack

Leonard C Boyle, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that CHRISTOPHER RODRIGUEZ, also known as “Rico,” 33, last residing in Hamden, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson in Hartford to 60 months of imprisonment, followed by four years of supervised release, for distributing heroin and crack cocaine.

According to court documents and statements made in court, in the summer of 2017, members of the FBI’s Bridgeport Safe Streets Task Force and Bridgeport Police Department began investigating individuals who were distributing narcotics in and around Bridgeport.  The investigation has included the use of court-authorized wiretaps, controlled purchases of narcotics, physical and video surveillance, and the execution of multiple search and seizure warrants.  The investigation revealed that Rodriguez, Antonio Small, Evan Sheffield, Louis McDowell, Anthony Small and others were distributing large quantities of heroin, fentanyl and crack cocaine in the Bridgeport area.

On January 13, 2020, Rodriguez pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute, and to possess with intent to distribute, 100 grams or more of heroin and a quantity of cocaine base (“crack”).

Antonio Small, Sheffield, McDowell, and Anthony Small have pleaded guilty.  On October 27, 2020, Judge Thompson sentenced Sheffield to 97 months of imprisonment.  Antonio Small, McDowell and Anthony Small await sentencing.

This matter is being investigated by the FBI’s Bridgeport Safe Streets Task Force and the Bridgeport Police Department, as well as the DEA, Connecticut State Police, and the Stratford, Norwalk, Seymour and Trumbull Police Departments.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Karen L. Peck and Patrick J. Doherty through the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) Program.  OCDETF identifies, disrupts and dismantles drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs and transnational criminal organizations through a prosecutor-led and intelligence-driven approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.  Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

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