A former Rochester, New York, man spending five years at the Maine State Prison for aggravated drug trafficking in Somerset County pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court to conspiracy to distribute heroin, fentanyl and cocaine base.

Jamie Martinez Betances, 31, also known as “Booger,” “Booga,” “Buga” and “Ice,” who had an address in Augusta at one point, is the latest defendant charged in a 16-person central Maine drug conspiracy to plead guilty. Several people, including Darrell Newton, of Rochester, New York, the man named as the ringleader, have pleaded guilty. And some have been sentenced, including Derek Blake, 32, of Sidney, who was sentenced Monday to 42 months in federal prison.

Betances is represented in U.S. District Court by attorney Hunter J. Tzovarras.

According to the version of events, filed with the court by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joel Casey, the conspiracy, which operated June 14, 2015, and March 9, 2017, involved bringing illegal drugs from Rochester to central Maine for distribution through local people who allowed their residences to be used. Casey said there were 12-15 such residences at the height of the conspiracy, and that Betances worked in central Maine.

“To coordinate his efforts with other members of the conspiracy, the defendant communicated via telephone calls and text messaging with members of the conspiracy in Central Maine and in Rochester,” Casey wrote.

The prosecutor also noted, “Evidence seized by during law enforcement during the course of the conspiracy would also be offered, including drugs, a firearm, and cash, among other evidence, seized from a residence in Fairfield, Maine on May 10, 2016.”

According to a news release from the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency at that time, 18 ounces of crack cocaine, more than 2 ounces of the pain reliever fentanyl, and a loaded handgun were located. Betances was one of three people from Rochester, New York, arrested there along with two other local residents.

Betances was later convicted of aggravated trafficking and was sentenced in June 2017 to a total of 15 years in prison, with five years to be served immediately and the remainder suspended while he spends three years on probation. He is currently at the Maine State Prison, according to the Department of Correction website.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

[email protected]

Twitter: @betadams

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