Friday, September 24, 2021

Dominican National Sentenced for Trafficking Fentanyl, Health Care Fraud, ID Theft, Misuse of a Social Security Number

 PROVIDENCE – A Dominican national who operated a drug stash house and arranged for the sale of fentanyl on multiple occasions, and who used the stolen identity and Social Security number of another person to gain Rhode Island Medicaid benefits and Rhode Island driver’s licenses and permits, was sentenced today to seven years in federal prison, announced Acting United States Attorney Richard B. Myrus.

Jeurin Celado, 31, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge William E. Smith to 96 months of incarceration to be followed by four years of federal supervised release and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $4,726.50 to the Rhode Island Medicaid Program. Celado pleaded guilty on April 2, 2021, to false representation of a Social Security number, aggravated identity theft, health care fraud, and conspiracy to distribute fentanyl.

At the time of his guilty plea, Celado admitted to the court that from 2010 until August 2019, he used the name, date of birth, and Social Security number of a person he does not know to obtain permits and driver’s licenses from the Rhode Island Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).

In addition, Celado admitted that beginning in August 2014 and continuing through July 2018, he used the same stolen identity and Social Security number to obtain Rhode Island Medicaid benefits, health insurance that as a non-United States citizen he was ineligible to receive. Celado obtained Medicaid benefits valued at approximately $4,726.50.

Additionally, according to information presented to the court, in August and September 2019, an undercover drug investigation by the Woonsocket Police Department included arranging for four undercover purchases of fentanyl from a person known as “Tony.” On each occasion, “Tony” directed the buyer to a location where that person was met by a “runner” who delivered the drugs in exchange for cash. The investigation determined that “Tony” was, in fact, Jeurin Celado, and that he was using an apartment in Manville as a stash house and a location to cut and prepare drugs for delivery. On October 7, 2019, during a court-authorized search of the apartment, law enforcement discovered between 40 and 400 grams of fentanyl and other items consistent with a drug distribution operation.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Dulce Donovan.

The various investigations into Celado’s criminal activities were conducted by the Woonsocket Police Department, Homeland Security Investigations, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General.

Acting United States Attorney Myrus acknowledges and thanks the United States Marshals Service for its assistance in locating and assisting in the arrest of the defendant.

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