Rossetti Associate Pleads Guilty, Sentenced to Five Years in State Prison in Connection with Drug Robbery
Defendant Connected to Highly Organized and Violent Criminal Enterprise throughout Eastern Massachusetts
BOSTON – An associate of alleged mob captain Mark Rossetti has pleaded guilty and been sentenced to five years in state prison in connection with a drug robbery, Attorney General Martha Coakley announced today.
Edward Harris, age 38, of Revere, pleaded guilty Thursday in Suffolk Superior Court to charges of Breaking and Entering, Conspiracy to Commit Breaking and Entering, and Conspiracy to Violate the Drug Law. After the plea was entered, Suffolk Superior Court Judge Christine Roach sentenced Harris to five years to five years and one day in state prison.
“This defendant, an associate of Mark Rossetti, broke into a home in Roslindale to steal heroin and money,” AG Coakley said. “His actions and involvement in a criminal organization threatened the safety of our communities.”
Today’s sentence is the result of a multi-agency targeted investigation into a highly organized and violent criminal enterprise that operated throughout eastern Massachusetts. The investigation, conducted jointly by the Attorney General’s Office, Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett’s Office, and the Massachusetts State Police Special Service Section, resulted in the arrest and indictment of multiple individuals involved in extortion, drug trafficking, robberies, assaults and other crimes.
In October 2010, AG Coakley, DA Blodgett, and recently retired Colonel Marian J. McGovern, former superintendent of the State Police, announced the indictments of 31 individuals in connection with this highly organized and violent criminal enterprise. Many of these cases are still being prosecuted.
In late 2009, a joint investigation began into a criminal network in eastern Massachusetts involving the trafficking of drugs, extortionate activity, money laundering, loan sharking (criminal usury), armed home invasion, kidnapping, armed robbery, illegal possession of loaded firearms, the illegal possession of a pipe bomb, assault and battery, witness intimidation, bookmaking (unlawful gaming), conspiracy, and perjury, among other crimes.
Throughout the course of the investigation, authorities executed 30 search warrants on several locations and seized $1.3 million in cash associated with illegal gaming and loan sharking, $120,000 in drug money, over a kilo of heroin, 200 pounds of marijuana, 9 scales, a heroin press, a police scanner, two bullet proof vests, a pipe bomb, a replica Uzi machine gun, a rifle, a loaded handgun and five motor vehicles.
The suspected leader of the criminal network, Rossetti, was indicted in October 2010 by a Statewide Grand Jury in connection with organizing this criminal network involved in extortion, drug trafficking, robberies, assaults and other crimes. Utilizing state-of-the art investigative techniques, investigators and prosecutors developed evidence against Rossetti and other individuals associated with the criminal organization. The investigation revealed that Rossetti and Quezada allegedly ordered two other associates, Edward Harris and Michael Prochilo, Jr., to break into a Roslindale home to steal to heroin and money. In July, a Suffolk Superior Court jury found Rossetti and Quezada each guilty on one count of Breaking and Entering with Intent to Commit a Felony Therein. Rossetti was sentenced to seven to nine years in state prison and Quezada was sentenced to four-and-a-half to seven years in state prison. Edward Harris pleaded guilty yesterday and was sentenced to five years in state prison. The case against Prochilo, Jr. is pending.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Dean Mazzone, Chief of AG Coakley’s Enterprise and Major Crimes Division and Assistant Attorney General Patrick Hanley, also of AG Coakley’s Enterprise and Major Crimes Division, with assistance from Shannon Legrice of the AG’s Victim/Witness Services Division and paralegal Lindsay Bonda, from the Enterprise and Major Crimes Division. It was investigated by the Special Service Section of the Massachusetts State Police, the Essex District Attorney’s Office and Massachusetts State Police detectives assigned to the Essex District Attorney’s Office, with assistance from various local police departments.