BETHEL, Conn. -- A Bethel man is facing federal drug distribution charges in connection with the overdose deaths of two women in Bethel, the U.S. attorney for Connecticut announced Thursday.
Paul Mignani, 51, was arrested Wednesday night and charged with possession with intent to distribute, and distribution, of heroin and cocaine. The charge carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
He appeared Thursday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Sarah A. L. Merriam in New Haven and was ordered detained, said U.S. Attorney Deirdre Daly.
The investigation centered on the overdose deaths of a 54-year-old woman at a Bethel residence on July 31 and of the Dec. 12 overdose death of a 25-year-old woman at Mignani's home, Daly said. Mignani is charged with distributing the heroin that the 54-year-old woman consumed shortly before her death, she said. The complaint said that Mignani also provided the controlled substance taken by the 25-year-old woman before her death.
Police searched Mignani's home on Dec. 12 and seized 3 ounces of cocaine, Daly said. MignaniI was arrested on related state charges on that date, police said.
The charges stem from an ongoing statewide initiative targeting narcotics dealers who distribute heroin, fentanyl or opioids that cause death or serious injury to users.
This matter was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Haven Tactical Diversion Squad, and the Bethel Police Department, with assistance from the States Attorney’s Office for the Judicial District of Danbury. The DEA Task Force includes participants from the New Haven, Hamden, Greenwich, Shelton, Bristol, Vernon, Wilton, Milford, Monroe, Fairfield and Manchester Police Departments, and the Connecticut State Police.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert M. Spector.