Drug dealers imprisoned, exiled

November 16, 2007
By

JOHN RUCH

Three drug dealers who plagued Bromley-Heath Housing Development residents—including children—were recently sentenced to long prison terms and will be banned from the entire city of Boston once they get out.

In an unrelated case, Academy Homes II housing development resident Henry Johns, 27, last month was hit with state charges of cocaine trafficking and possession of high-capacity gun with its serial numbers removed, as well as possession of ammo. Prosecutors say investigation of gang activity led them to the Egleston Square development.

Amos Carrasquillo, 19; Louis Garcia Jr., 21; and Nathan Garrasteguy, 26, were convicted of federal charges related to cocaine-dealing in and around Bromley-Heath in Jackson Square. They were among 23 suspects charged in last year’s major FBI and police bust in the housing development.

Carrasquillo was sentenced to 11 years in prison. He still faces charges related to a separate incident in Bromley-Heath where he allegedly pointed a gun at Boston Police officers and was shot by them.

Garcia was sentenced to 15 years, and Garrasteguy to 10 years.

In addition, the men will be banned from Suffolk County—which includes Boston, Chelsea, Revere and Winthrop—for long periods after their release. Garcia and Garrasteguy will be exiled for 12 years, and Carrasquillo for eight.

Carrasquillo and Garrasteguy, who formerly lived in Bromley-Heath, were already banned from the housing development. Garcia is a Mission Hill resident.

US Attorney Michael Sullivan in a press statement called the sentences “a potent reminder of the penalties for these offenses and how committed law enforcement is to reducing drug trafficking and gang violence in Boston.”

The FBI and police said that at least some of the drug activity is connected to the Heath Street Gang, more than 100 members strong, which is based in Bromley-Heath.

The cases against Carrasquillo and Garrasteguy included recordings made by an FBI witness code-named “Labyrinth,” who wore a wire during drug deals in various areas, including Bromley-Heath.

“This case also confirmed in a much more personal way the impact that drug trafficking and related crime has on the residents of Bromley-Heath, the vast majority of whom have nothing to do with (and are in fact victimized by) the criminal activities of Garrasteguy and Carrasquillo,” federal prosecutors said in a court sentencing statement. “During the charged sales of crack cocaine in this case, [surveillance] videos made it clear that innocent residents of the project (including young children) were repeatedly confronted with drug deals outside their homes being conducted by these defendants.”

Officials have said various Bromley-Heath residents acted as “cooperating witnesses” in carrying out the 2006 bust.

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