A New Bedford woman who organized a fentanyl trafficking ring was sentenced to up to six-and-a-half years in state prison after pleading guilty in Fall River Superior Court March 24.

Maria Carrion, 46, was one of the distributors and runners for the Orlando Badillo Fentanyl Drug Trafficking Organization, the Bristol County District Attorney's Office said in a news release. The organization was dismantled in 2019 after a year-long multi-agency investigation known as Operation Ghost.

Dartmouth and Massachusetts State Police from the district attorney's drug unit learned in 2018 of Badillo's large-scale SouthCoast fentanyl operation, prompting an investigation that included New Bedford Police, Homeland Security and the Bristol County Sheriff's Office, among other agencies.

"The defendant and others profited from the distribution of fentanyl, heroin and other narcotics to drug users in our communities,” Quinn said in a statement. “The defendant has a prior drug dealing conviction and I am pleased she was held accountable for her role in distributing Fentanyl as part of this organization.”

Judge Raffi Yessayan sentenced Carrion to four to six-and-a-half years in state prison, followed by two years of supervised probation. Investigation coordinator Steve Butts, assistant district attorney, prosecuted the case.

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