An FBI agent outside the Holiday Inn Express in Riverhead Nov. 14, 2018.

A Jamesport man was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison yesterday following his guilty plea last year to a drug trafficking charge.

Tramaine (“Bootsie”) Brown, 30, pleaded guilty in June to one count of a five-count indictment charging him with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance: crack cocaine and powder cocaine.

The 10-year sentence, the mandatory statutory minimum, was imposed yesterday by United States District Court Judge Joanna Seybert in Central Islip.

A 2018 investigation by the FBI and the East End Drug Task Force into narcotics trafficking and gang activity on the East End led to Brown’s arrest, prosecutors said.

As part of that investigation, agents and officers purchased more than 300 grams of crack cocaine from Brown at his home on Washington Avenue in Jamesport, where he resided with his wife and his children. During one purchase, Brown was captured on video “cooking” powder cocaine into crack in his kitchen, while a child was present, according to prosecutors. A backpack containing fentanyl, an extremely dangerous opioid, was in close proximity to the child.

A search warrant executed at Brown’s residence on Nov. 14, 2018, resulted in the seizure of large quantities of narcotics, cash, a .223 caliber assault rifle, a .308 caliber rifle and a .45 caliber pistol, prosecutors said. In total, during the investigation of Brown’s drug trafficking operation, law enforcement recovered quantities of crack cocaine, powder cocaine, fentanyl, marijuana, narcotics packaging materials, a kilogram press, eight cell phones and over $10,000 in cash.

Two other Riverhead men, Quandol Lewis and Demario Weston, were charged by the same indictment Nov. 14, 2018. The charges against Lewis and Weston are both still pending.

The indictment was one of three unsealed that day in federal court that charged more than a dozen people in what prosecutors called a large-scale cocaine distribution operation. Five of the people charged were members or affiliates of the Bloods gang, prosecutors said.

Early in the morning of Nov. 14, 2018, in a massive operation, law enforcement officers simultaneously raided Brown’s Washington Avenue home, as well as residences in the Calverton Hills condominium complex and the Doctors Path apartments and a room or rooms at the Holiday Inn Express in Riverhead. The raids resulted in numerous arrests and seizures of drugs, cash and weapons.

So far, only Brown and one other defendant, Dayna Barrow of Riverhead, have had dispositions of their charges. The rest remain pending in federal court in Central Islip. All but one of the people charged remain in custody; one is released on bail. Like Brown, Barrow entered a guilty plea in June. He pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and one count of felon in possession of a firearm. Barrow’s sentence was to be set by probation, according to the federal court records available online. No further information about his sentence was available.

U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Richard Donoghue announced Brown’s sentence in a press release yesterday afternoon.

“The Riverhead area is safer with Tramaine Brown sent to prison for running an armed and dangerous drug trafficking operation that endangered residents, including Brown’s own family members,” Donoghue said.

“We will continue to work tirelessly with our federal and local law enforcement partners to take drugs and drug traffickers off our streets,” he said.

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Denise Civiletti
Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor, attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.