PORTLAND, Maine — The man who admitted to being the mastermind behind a scheme to distribute more than 10 pounds of cocaine and oxycodone pills in northern Maine was sentenced Wednesday in U.S. District Court to 12½ years in federal prison.
Michael Mayer, 56, of Jupiter, Fla., and Costa Rica also was sentenced to five years of supervised release, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
He is one of 21 people who have admitted being part of a drug distribution ring that stretched from Costa Rica to Florida to Maine, Assistant U.S. Attorney Joel Casey, who prosecuted the case, said Wednesday.
U.S. District Judge D. Brock Hornby “said in sentencing Mr. Mayer this was one of the most significant drug conspiracy cases he’s presided over,” Casey said.
Mayer pleaded guilty in June 2009 to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute controlled substances. He was indicted by a federal grand jury in November 2007.
Mayer faced a minimum of 10 years in prison and a maximum of life, and a fine of up to $4 million.
The defendant was arrested in Costa Rica sometime after that and extradited to Maine in October 2008. He has been held without bail since then. That time is expected to be applied to his sentence.
In addition to sentencing Mayer to prison, Hornby ordered him to forfeit $2.6 million, the amount the court found Mayer profited from the operation, which he ran from Jan. 1, 2002, to June 1, 2005. Mayer also was ordered to forfeit four properties he owns in Costa Rica, three cars and a boat in Costa Rica, and a bank account at Banco National in his adopted country.
Once the property is seized in the Central American nation, it will be auctioned off through the forfeiture program run by the U.S. Marshal’s Service under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Justice.
Mayer, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Bangor, lived a lavish lifestyle fueled by the cash he made supplying large quantities of cocaine and oxycodone, a powerful painkiller, to mid- and street-level dealers in Maine. Mayer sometimes had his co-conspirators transport the drugs from Florida to Maine and at other times did it himself, according to prosecutors. He would meet with area distributors, mainly in the Lincoln-Lee area, to collect the proceeds, according to prosecutors.
After an alleged dispute over money between Mayer and his buyers in Maine, Casey said in 2008, members of the drug ring obtained cocaine from June 2005 through November 2005 from Laurent “Larry” Provost, 62, of Woonsocket, R.I., who was then living in Mansfield, Mass. The relationship between the Maine buyers and Provost ended after less than six months in a disagreement over money and the quality of the drugs, according to court documents.
The group then turned to two people from the Dominican Republic who were operating out of Lawrence, Mass. Prosecutors have not named them. They were arrested in New Hampshire on unrelated drug charges in January 2006 and are serving federal prison terms, Casey has said. Where the ring obtained drugs after that has not been made public.
Provost was sentenced in October to 2½ years in prison and three years of supervised release and was ordered to forfeit $100,000.
Four others — Kenneth Kaczmarski, 43, of Jupiter, Fla.; Anita Whitehead, 42, of Howland; Fred Goslin, 49, of Howland; and Anthony Martin, 49, of Lincoln — have pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing in connection with the drug ring, Casey said Wednesday.
Others who have pleaded guilty and received the following sentences are:
Lisa Delaurentiis, 43, Jupiter, Fla., three years, in prison, three years supervised release, forfeiture of $240,000.
Brent “Cowboy” Noyes, 57, Lincoln, 6½ years in prison, three years supervised release, forfeiture of $120,000.
Richard “Rat” Russell, 49, Lincoln, 10 years in federal prison, eight years supervised release, forfeiture of $180,500.
Troy Littlefield, 44, Oakfield, six years in prison, four years supervised release, forfeiture of $85,000.
Jeffery Whitehead, 54, Enfield, five years and five months in prison, four years supervised release, forfeiture of $81,600.
Jeffrey Polk, 36, Alaska, four years in prison, three years supervised release, forfeiture of $240,000.
Daniel “Danny” Littlefield, 49, Lee, seven years and eight months in prison, five years supervised release, forfeiture of $593,000.
Mark Russell, 41, Lincoln, one year and 10 months in prison, four years supervised release, forfeiture of $2.5 million.
Donald “Donny” Russell, 50, Lincoln, four years in prison, three years supervised release, forfeiture of $523,000.
Raymond Davis, 48 Lincoln and Jupiter, Fla., seven years in prison, five years supervised release, forfeiture of $624,000.
Jeffrey “Bow Neck” Edwards, 42, Bradenton and Islamorada, Fla., four years in prison, three years supervised release, forfeiture of $270,000.
Robert Donath, 28, Lincoln, 7½ years in prison, five years supervised release, forfeiture of $284,000.
Peter Glidden, 31, Smithfield, seven years in prison, five years supervised release, forfeiture of $240,000.
Preston Chubbuck, 43, Springfield, two years and one month in prison, three years supervised release, forfeiture of $25,000.
Nancy Squegilia, 51, East Millinocket, two years and nine months in prison, three years supervised release, forfeiture of $11,600.
The Russells are brothers. The Littlefields are not related, according to Casey.