On Nov. 18, a 55-year-old man entered a guilty plea to acting as a distributor of heroin to five lower-level dealers in two New Jersey counties. The man, a restaurant owner, was thought to be the head of the drug ring and said that he sold 1,900 ‘folds” of the opiate for just over two weeks in late July and early August. The cost of the personal doses run between $4 and $5 each, which means the street value of the heroin was between $7,600 and $9,500.
His plea agreement includes five years in prison, and fines of $53,366. Included in that amount is money for the sale of his restaurant since the prosecutor’s office confiscated the assets he used to promote his drug trade. His 2008 Dodge Durango was also seized when he was taken into custody along with a 2011 Chevy Colorado. However, he will pay the prosecutor’s office $2,000 to buy back the later vehicle. Although the prosecutor’s office also confiscated $21,791, they will return $8,675 to him.
In addition to owning the restaurant, the accused man was also a co-owner of a communication company that sold product to law enforcement agencies in the state. He stepped down from that company.
Authorities conducted a six-month investigation into the case. His initial drug charges included dozens of drug crimes, but he pled guilty to just one count of conspiracy to possess heroin with the intent to distribute. The main drug supplier was also charged.
When a person faces numerous drug charges, the accompanying sentence could be extremely harsh. A criminal defense attorney might be able to negotiate a plea agreement, eliminate all charges except for one, and significantly reduce the penalties a client faces.