Over the weekend, six individuals were arrested in Boston who are believed to be involved in drug dealing near the Boston Common, according to news reports at the Houston Chronicle and NBC News. One of the six people arrested was 42-year-old John Manwaring of Florida, who is a JetBlue pilot. Manwaring was arraigned on Monday on charges of heroin possession.
Manwaring told police that he had arrived in Boston on Sunday, July 20, and that he was a pilot. A woman who was with Manwaring and who was not named in news reports was also charged with heroin possession. Among the others arrested were two men who were charged with selling heroin, and another charged with trespassing and cocaine possession.
Residents in the area of Boylston and Tremont Streets had begun complaining about suspected drug activity going on in the area, which led police to investigate the allegations. Police had also made numerous drug arrests in the area in the past.
JetBlue Airways Corp., based in New York, announced on Sunday evening that Manwaring had been removed from duty pending the outcome of the investigation. The company is cooperating with investigators, and stated that “In compliance with all FAA and DOT regulations and requirements, JetBlue has in place a rigorous drug testing programs for crew members that includes a strict “no tolerance” program.
Manwaring was released on his own recognizance after pleading not guilty in court on Monday.
In Massachusetts, the criminal penalties for a first offense heroin possession conviction include fines of up to $2,000 and up to two years in prison. In the state of Michigan, those found guilty of possessing less than 50 grams of heroin will face up to four years in prison, along with fines of as much as $25,000. The criminal penalties for heroin possession depend on factors including criminal history, amount of heroin involved, and where the crime occurred (such as in close proximity to a school, park, church, etc.).
Possession of a large amount of heroin, or an amount that would be considered by police as more than a person would need for his or her own personal use, could lead to possession with intent charges. When prosecutors trump up a possession charge to possession with intent to distribute or deliver, the situation becomes much more serious.
Allegations of drug possession, whether true or false, can wreck an individual’s career and reputation. Regardless of the situation, anyone who is accused of possessing, manufacturing, or distributing illegal drugs including heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, or marijuana must consult with a seasoned Michigan drug crime attorney immediately in order to protect your legal rights and reach a positive resolution.