BANGOR, Maine — A New York man caught dealing cocaine to an undercover agent in Bangor led Maine Drug Enforcement Agency investigators to two men — each with numerous drug convictions — caught bringing coke into Maine, MDEA Division Commander Darrell Crandall said Friday.
The agents working the case seized cocaine with a street value of $10,000 in one raid and another $11,600 in drugs from the shipment stopped on Interstate 95, he said.
Richard Paulino, 20, of New York, John Dionne Jr., 41, of Brewer, and James Pelkey, 41, of Bangor all were charged with felony trafficking in cocaine. Paulino faces two counts of drug trafficking and Dionne and Pelkey also face illegal importation of cocaine charges.
“There was approximately 216 grams seized in the case and at $100 a gram that would be $21,600,” Crandall, who commands MDEA Division II, covering Kennebec and Somerset counties north, said on Friday.
A monthlong investigation into coke dealing in the Bangor area led up to the Oct. 4 arrest of Paulino.
“Agents had purchased cocaine from Paulino during the investigation and seized a small amount of cocaine from him at the time of his arrest,” Crandall said.
Bangor police assisted the drug agents, who also seized a 2007 Honda Accord belonging to Paulino during the raid, he said.
Agents then conducted two other raids, one at a Bangor motel and one as a residence where Paulino kept a safe, Crandall said.
“Inside the safe MDEA agents located over 100 grams of cocaine and 53 grams of suspected crack,” he said.
The MDEA investigation led agents to Dionne and Pelkey, who were stopped on Interstate 95 in Plymouth on Oct. 7 while en route to Bangor.
“We had information that they were coming north with drugs in the vehicle” and found 62 grams of cocaine, Crandall said.
Paulino, Dionne and Pelkey each faces a penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $20,000 if convicted of the felony unlawful trafficking in scheduled drugs charges against them.
Paulino’s hometown in New York was not available Friday. He was listed as a Bangor resident when convicted in September of marijuana possession, according to prior court listings printed in the Bangor Daily News.
Dionne and Pelkey are no strangers to area police and both have numerous convictions.
Pelkey was convicted of unlawful trafficking in scheduled drugs in April 2009 and January 2007. During the 2009 case he was sentenced to prison for three years with all but 30 days suspended, probation for two years and a $400 fine, the BDN listings state.
Pelkey also has convictions for assault, violating condition of release, possessing marijuana, theft by unauthorized taking or transfer, misuse of identification, unauthorized use of property and operating with a suspended or revoked license.
Dionne was age 33 when he was convicted in June 2003 with unlawful possession of scheduled drugs and sentenced to five days in jail.
Dionne also has racked up convictions for unlawful use of license, disorderly conduct, failing to register vehicle, operating motor vehicle after suspension and violating conditions of release.
Pelkey is scheduled to be arraigned Nov. 16 and Dionne and Paulino will be in court on Dec. 8.
“I think it’s probable” other associated arrests will be made, Crandall said.