A Woonsocket, R.I., tire dealer arrested during a raid of Arnold’s Tires and Rims last June pleaded guilty to trafficking crack cocaine in U.S. District Court in Providence.
Pablo Marino Chala, 46, faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison followed by a minimum of four years of supervised release when he is sentenced in May, according to local reports. He pled guilty to one count of distribution of 28 grams or more of crack cocaine and two counts of distribution of crack cocaine.
On June 29, at least three men were arrested after state and local law enforcement agencies swarmed the shop, removing dogs and employees from the building and ripping apart vehicles in search of evidence.
According to reports, Chala sold crack cocaine from his auto repair business on at least three occasions, between January and June 2011. He has admitted to the court that he sold 55.4 grams of crack cocaine on Jan. 5, 2011; 26.2 grams on Feb. 10, 2011; and 20.4 grams on June 28, 2011. All of the sales were to the same person and all of the transactions were monitored by DEA agents and Woonsocket Police.
Chala was arrested shortly after the third transaction was completed. He has been detained since his arrest and will be sentenced May 3.