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PROVIDENCE – A Providence man currently serving a term of federal supervised release, having completed a 20-year federal prison sentence for trafficking cocaine, has been ordered detained in federal custody following his arrest for allegedly trafficking multiple kilograms of cocaine.

Jesus Martinez, 38, was arrested by U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) agents following an investigation into the alleged shipment into Rhode Island of multiple packages sent through the Postal Service containing significant quantities of cocaine, and multiple shipments to Puerto Rico via the U.S Postal Service of large sums of cash.

According to court documents, in October, a parcel containing $46,500 shipped to Puerto Rico by Martinez was seized by USPIS agents.  Subsequently, it is alleged, parcels found to contain varying amounts of cocaine were shipped from Puerto Rico to various Rhode Island addresses associated with Martinez.  Two parcel seizures revealed a total of 4,460 grams (nearly 4.5 kilograms) of cocaine.  In late November, Martinez allegedly shipped a parcel to Puerto Rico that a court-authorized search revealed contained $7,000 concealed within a book.  The investigation revealed additional parcels continued to arrive from Puerto Rico and California to addresses allegedly associated with Martinez.  Agents surveilled Martinez retrieving the parcels and bringing them to his residence. 

It is alleged that on December 9, Martinez retrieved two packages, one from the post office and one delivered to a Providence residence. The packages contained a total of 3,310 grams (more than 3 kilograms) of cocaine. That day, court-authorized searches were conducted at Martinez’s residence and another address associated with Martinez. The following day his vehicle was searched. In total, USPIS Inspectors and members of the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force seized the two packages which contained a total of more than 3 kilos of cocaine, an additional 250 grams of cocaine, 23 pounds of marijuana, and a total of $95,000 in cash.

Martinez appeared before U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Lincoln D. Almond on a federal criminal complaint charging him with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance; distribution of and possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance; and unlawful use of the mail to facilitate the distribution of a controlled substance, announced United States Attorney Aaron L. Weisman, Joseph W. Cronin, Inspector in Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Boston Division, and Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police Colonel James M. Manni.

A federal criminal complaint is merely an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Zechariah Chafee.

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