Judge scolds convicted fentanyl dealer, hands down sentence

A federal judge handed down a 35-year-sentence on Thursday to a man convicted of dealing fentanyl, scolding him for being motivated by “pure greed.”

The remarks by U.S. District Judge Richard D. Bennett came as he sentenced Paul Alexander, 47, of Hanover, The Baltimore Sun reported. Alexander was convicted by a jury last fall.

“You are feeding the epidemic in this community," Bennett told Alexander. “The word has to go out here — when you become a kingpin ... you will pay the price."

Alexander was charged last year after agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration and Anne Arundel County Police raided two apartments linked to him and found 10 kilograms of fentanyl, more than $4 million in cash and a loaded pistol with an extended magazine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew DellaBetta asked for 35 years. Defense attorneys argued for the mandatory minimum of 15 years, saying Alexander would be 62 by the time he was released and unlikely by then to engage in criminal activity. They also said it would give him a chance to be a father to an infant son.

Bennett pushed back, asking Alexander rhetorically how he would feel about his children getting hooked on the fentanyl he was selling.