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Addiction in Franklin County

Alleged heroin trafficker arraigned in Superior Court

GREENFIELD — Heroin trafficking charges against a Westfield man have been brought before Franklin Superior Court. Antonio Rivera III, 28, also known as “Gizmo,” of 9 Leonard St. in Westfield, pleaded innocent to charges of trafficking in heroin and heroin possession Friday. He was ordered held on $10,000 cash bail.

Rivera’s attorney, Robert Bray, asked Judge Mary Lou Rup that bail be lowered to $500 and a GPS monitoring device be used to track Rivera during his release, but she denied the request.

“Given the nature of the charges coupled with his record, I’m satisfied that a significant amount of bail is required to secure his appearance (in court),” Rup said.

Bray also disputed the validity of the traffic stop that led to Rivera’s arrest May 9.

“The facts of the case involved a rather dubious motor vehicle stop,” Bray argued. “The young lady driving was taken out of the vehicle by officers, even though she had a valid license and registration. From there, the dominos fell.”

Officer Cody Guilbault had pulled the vehicle over after it rolled through a Woodard Road stop sign, he wrote in his police report.

Rivera’s attorney contended that although the driver, identified in police reports as Kaitlin McAdams, gave police permission to search her Lexus, that permission did not extend to a backpack on the back seat belonging to Rivera.

Inside that backpack, according to Guilbault, were 967 bags of heroin, stamped “Free,” as well as three grams of marijuana, $200 and a marijuana grinder.

Guilbault’s report stated that two informants and known drug users previously told police that Rivera had been selling “copious amounts of heroin” in the Greenfield area.

Officers had seen Rivera carrying his backpack and walking around town several times throughout the day preceding his arrest, according to Guilbault.

If convicted of heroin trafficking, Rivera faces a five- to 20-year state prison sentence.

You can reach David Rainville at: drainville@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 279 On Twitter, follow @RecorderRain

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