BURLINGTON — A Barre man suspected of peddling heroin out of his residence has been ordered jailed pending further federal court proceedings.

Alexander “Dice” Jimenez, 32, sold heroin three times to the Vermont Drug Task Force between mid-March and mid-April while he lived at an apartment at 100 Summer St. in Barre, federal court records claim. Jimenez is the latest defendant arrested as part of a multi-agency drug sweep that began last week in and around Barre. Police have arrested at least 26 defendants on federal and state drug and gun charges. A few more arrests are expected, a police spokesman said. The Vermont Drug Task Force and the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives began a major criminal investigation in November into the sale of both heroin and crack cocaine in the Barre area, court records revealed.

Federal Magistrate Judge John M. Conroy ordered Jimenez detained this week on grounds he was a danger to the community and that he would likely fail to appear for future court hearings.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Eugenia A. P. Cowles, in a detention motion, said Jimenez has a criminal record that includes a conviction in Rutland for aiding in the commission of a felony in 2013, and in New York County for criminal possession  of a loaded firearm in 2007. She also wrote there was “an apparent fugitive from justice warrant out of Deerfield, Mass. in late 2017.”

Cowles, the chief of the criminal division, said she questioned whether Jimenez could follow court-imposed release conditions or even modify his behavior.

Conroy ordered Jimenez detained, but said he was entitled to a court hearing on whether there was probable cause for his arrest. Conroy  set it for 2 p.m. on June 22, unless a federal grand jury indicts Jimenez in the interim. The three heroin sales by Jimenez were nearly identical, court records show.  Each time a confidential informant negotiated the sale, went to the apartment and returned with the heroin, according to ATF Special Agent Eric Brimo. He wrote the drugs were all weighed and each tested positive for heroin. In one case, the buyer expected to buy 10 bags of heroin for $100, but actually received 11 bags, Brimo wrote. In the second sale the buyer received 10 bags for $80, while in the third sale the informant obtained 20 bags for $160, the agent said.  

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