Methuen man pleads guilty to federal fentanyl distribution charge

Jill Harmacinski, The Eagle-Tribune, North Andover, Mass.
·1 min read

Mar. 31—BOSTON — A Methuen man is facing a minimum of five years in federal prison after pleading guilty to fentanyl distribution and misusing a Social Security number, according to a statement released by the Department of Justice.

Bladimir Sanchez Soto, 29, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute 40 grams or more of fentanyl and one count of false representation of a Social Security number, according to the statement.

U.S. District Court Judge Leo T. Sorokin scheduled sentencing for July 27, 2021. Sanchez Soto was indicted in May 2020, authorities said.

Sanchez Soto helped arrange four sales of approximately 65 grams of fentanyl in November 2019 and January 2020, according to authorities.

In February 2020, Sanchez Soto and a co-defendant were arrested and additional fentanyl was seized, according to the statement.

Sanchez Soto was previously indicted in the Western District of Michigan in connection with using a false name and Social Security number to obtain a Michigan driver's license in November 2016. The matter was transferred to the District of Massachusetts for plea and sentencing, according to the DOJ.

The charge of conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute 40 grams or more of fentanyl provides for a minimum sentence of five years and up to 40 years in prison, at least four years and up to a lifetime of supervised release and a $5 million fine.

The charge of false representation of a Social Security number provides for a sentence of up to five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater.

Follow staff reporter Jill Harmacinski on Twitter @EagleTribJill.