NEW BRITAIN, Conn. (WTNH) – A New Britain man has been sentenced to serve 10 years in federal prison for trafficking narcotics into the state.

The DEA Hartford Taskforce began investigating a Mexican-based drug trafficking organization in 2019 that distributed both fentanyl and heroin into the state, according to court documents. The investigation revealed Armando Gonzalez, 40, of New Britain received kilogram quantities of narcotics, primarily fentanyl from a source and Mexico and distributed the drugs to street-level distributors.

Members of the organization delivered from the narcotics sales to a money broker in Brooklyn, New York who assisted in laundering the narcotics proceeds before the funds were transferred to the organization’s leaders. According to court documents, investigators seized $200,000 in cash between the months of August and October in 2019 from members of the drug trafficking organization.

Gonzalez and his associate David Cintron of Manchester used several locations in the state to store, process and package the fentanyl for street sale. The locations used include an office space on Pratt Street in Hartford, an apartment on Asylum Hill in Hartford, as well as an apartment in New Britain, according to court documents.

On December 18, 2019, Cintron was arrested on state charges shortly after he drove from the Pratt street location and was found in possession of 4,860 wax paper sleeves of fentanyl, 90 grams of unpackaged fentanyl, and other items used to process and package the narcotics, according to court records.

Gonzalez, Cintron and three associates were arrested on federal charges on April 28 in 2020. Investigators searched the New Britain apartment and seized numerous bags of fentanyl, items to used and package the narcotics, a 9mm firearm, 9mm ammunition and cash. Cintron was found in the bathroom of his Manchester residence, flushing what authorities believe was fentanyl down the toilet.

On June 3 in 2020, a grand jury returned an indictment charging Gonzalez, Cintron and eight others with narcotics distribution and money laundering offenses. On March 28 of 2022, Gonzalez pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute 40 grams or more of fentanyl, according to court records.

Gonzalez has been detained since his arrest. His past criminal history includes a state assault conviction stemming from an incident where he stabbed two victims at a nightclub and for unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon. Cintron also pled guilty and is awaiting sentencing, according to court documents.

The DEA’s Hartford task force includes personnel from the DEA Hartford Resident Office, the Connecticut State Police and the Bristol, Hartford, East Hartford, Enfield, Manchester, New Britain, Rocky Hill, Wethersfield, Windsor Locks and Willimantic Police Departments. Other agencies who assisted in the investigation included the DEA New York Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Strike Force and the New York Police Department, according to court documents.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Geoffrey M. Stone through the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces Program. OCDETF identifies, disrupts and dismantles drug traffickers money launderers, gangs and transnational criminal organizations. More information on the OCDETF program can be found here.