Man nabbed in Lyndonville gets 10 years for drug, gun crimes

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LYNDONVILLE — A Connecticut man arrested in Lyndonville was sentenced to 110 months, or nearly 10 years, in federal prison for firearm and drug trafficking offenses committed in Vermont, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced Monday.

Rafael Ortiz, 47, of Hartford, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute fentanyl, heroin and cocaine base, as well as possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.

Ortiz was arrested in May 2021 in Lyndonville on two Vermont warrants for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and eluding police. Court records state that during a foot pursuit, he discarded a 9mm semi-automatic pistol with a defaced serial number loaded with 14 rounds.

After being apprehended with a Taser, authorities recovered approximately 38 grams of cocaine base, 13 grams of fentanyl analogue, 11 grams of fentanyl, heroin mixed with fentanyl analogue, $1,500 cash, a meat cleaver and dagger-style knife from Ortiz.

In addition to the 110-month sentence, U.S. District Judge William K. Sessions III imposed three years of supervised release.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Vermont State Police and FBI investigated the case prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Corinne Smith, Nicole Cate, John Boscia and Jeff Davis.

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