Feds: Meriden man gets 5 years in prison for cocaine trafficking

February 27, 2019

A Meriden man that prompted a high-speed police chase from Milford to New Haven was sentenced Wednesday for his role in trafficking cocaine, the Department of Justice said.

Joel Cruz, 36, of Meriden, was sentenced to serve five years and three months in prison for trafficking cocaine, according to the DOJ. His prison sentence will be followed by five years of supervised release.

Court document said that on Sept. 2, 2017, Cruz engaged Milford police and Connecticut State Police in a high-speed chase from Interstate 95 in Milford to Interstate 91 in New Haven.

“During the chase, Cruz threw a package containing approximately one kilogram of cocaine from his vehicle,” the DOJ said. “When he was apprehended in the area of Exit 5 on I-91, he possessed $34,360 in cash.”

He forfeited the cash seized at the time of his arrest.

On Aug. 30, 2018, Cruz pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine.

Cruz, who was released on bond, was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service at the end of Wednesday’s court proceeding, the DOJ said.

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