PROVIDENCE – Three Woonsocket men were sentenced in federal court yesterday in connection with an armed home invasion and drug rip-off that occurred here two years ago.
Julio Candelario, 30, and Robert Beauparlant Jr., 27, were both ordered to serve 15 years, while Pedro Cuadrado, 22, was sentenced to nine years and three months. U.S. District Judge William E. Smith also ordered all three men to remain on supervised release for five years after they complete their prison sentences.
Candelario, Beauparlant and Cuadrado were identified as suspects in the home invasion by the Woonsocket Police Department and the federal bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) while the two agencies were jointly looking allegations that two of the men were involved in trading firearms for crack cocaine, according to U.S. Attorney Peter Neronha .
Jim Martin, a spokesman for Neronha, said that shortly before the home invasion, an undercover ATF agent acquired a .22-caliber semi-automatic rifle from Beauparlant. Beauparlant had acquired the weapon earlier from Candelario, who obtained it in a swap for crack cocaine “from a person known to the Woonsocket Police Department and ATF investigators,” Martin said.
Beauparlant and Candelario previously pleaded guilty to firearms charges stemming from that incident.
“This investigation reflects the importance and success of law enforcement agencies working together to curb this kind of violent criminal behavior and make our communities safer,” said Woonsocket Police Chief Thomas S. Carey. “My officers, working closely with agents from the ATF, identified these men and were successful in getting them off the street and into federal prison for a long time.”
The home invasion occurred at a residence located in the West End of Providence on Feb. 13, 2009, said Martin.
Federal prosecutors said the three men traveled from Woonsocket to Providence to meet with an individual staying at a residence where carpentry work was being done. When the three men entered the house, a firearm was drawn and pointed at the individual, who was robbed of a half-kilo of marijuana.
The intruders also fled with a leather bag which contained $2,800 – money the owner of the property had supplied to purchase construction supplies.
The three robbers fled the house and returned to Woonsocket in a car that belonged to one of the co-defendant's mothers. They later sold the marijuana and split the profits.
The three men were indicted on conspiracy, robbery, drug trafficking and firearms charges in connection with the home invasion. All had pleaded guilty to the charges last summer.
"As the federal agency charged with fighting violent crime ATF is committed to working with our local, state and federal law enforcement partners to bring to justice those who commit these violent acts," said Guy Thomas, special agent for the ATF's Boston Field Division. "I would like to acknowledge ATF's Providence field office and the men and women of the Woonsocket Police Department for their exceptional work in this investigation."