Three-Time Offender Faces Life In Prison
WORCESTER – Investigators with the Otsego County District Attorney’s Office partnered with the Drug Enforcement Administration to take down an alleged drug trafficker and three-time felon in the Town of Worcester.
Paul James Velleca, 45, was arrested yesterday after a no-knock warrant was served following an investigation put in place by Town Supervisor Donald L. Lindberg, who reported suspicious activity at Velleca’s mobile home.
With the assistance of the County Sheriff’s Special Enforcement Bureau, including K9 Units, and Oneonta City Police, detectives and investigators searched Velleca’s residence and SUV.
During the search they allegedly located and seized an unregistered Glock 9 mm semi-automatic pistol, approximately 30 grams of powder and crack cocaine valued at $3,000, 59 packets of heroin valued at $1,180, an ounce of marijuana valued at $350, an electronic digital scale, plastic baggies used for packaging and $1,120 in U.S. currency.
Velleca was charged with:
• Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree, two counts, for possessing heroin and cocaine with the intent to sell – class B felonies
• Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree for possessing more than one-half ounce of a narcotic drug, cocaine – a class B felony
• Criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree for being a felon and in possession of a firearm – a class D felony
• Criminal possession of a firearm for possessing an unregistered pistol – a class E felony
• Criminal possession of marijuana in the fifth degree for possessing more than 25 grams of marijuana – a class B misdemeanor
• Criminally using drug paraphernalia in the second degree, two counts, for possessing an electronic digital scale and plastic baggies used to weigh and package the narcotic drugs respectively – both class A misdemeanors
Velleca was arraigned by Town Justice William J. Fisher and remanded to the Otsego County Correctional Facility without bail due to his three previous felony convictions in New York State: attempted robbery in the second degree in Nassau County, criminal possession of marijuana in the second degree in Rockland County, and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fifth degree in Otsego County.
If Velleca is convicted of a felony, he can be sentenced to 15 years to life as a persistent felony offender.