ATTLEBORO — A city firefighter who retired after he was arrested by federal drug agents agents six months ago is expected to plead guilty in federal court Tuesday to a drug peddling charge.
Michael B. Wilson, 49, of 54A Allenson Ave., South Attleboro, is expected to plead guilty in U.S. District Court in Boston to possession of oxycodone with intent to distribute, according to court papers.
Wilson, a firefighter and paramedic for 26 years, was arrested at his home Feb. 1 by federal Drug Enforcement Administration officers and city police allegedly after accepting $250 worth of steroids and accepting 100 Percocet pills in a prearranged sale to a Cranston, R.I. man.
Under the plea agreement, Wilson will admit responsibility for possession with intent to distribute no more than 2.8 grams of oxycodone — the active drug in Percocet — and the prosecution will recommend a prison term at the low end of federal guidelines, his lawyer, Jessica Hedges of Boston, wrote in a five-page motion filed in court.
In Wilson’s case, the term of incarceration is expected to be either eight or 15 months, Hedges said in the motion. The defense is expected to recommend a very short prison sentence or a sentence without any incarceration, Hedges said.
Since his arraignment, Wilson has been free on an unsecured bond. Hedges is asking Judge Douglas Woodlock to allow Wilson to remain free pending sentencing or postpone the plea and sentencing until the probation department can complete a pre-sentencing report.
In her motion, Hedges argued that Wilson is not a flight risk and has complied with all conditions of his bail, which included random drug and alcohol testing. He has family and other strong ties to the community and noted that the prosecution agreed to allow him to remain free while the case was pending trial.
Since his arrest, Wilson has married his longtime girlfriend and mother of his 3-year-old daughter, and has maintained a full-time job with a limousine company to support them and three step-children, Hedges said.
In addition, Wilson has become an active member of his church and has undergone therapy which was not required by the court’s conditions. Wilson has “demonstrated a firm commitment to realigning himself with upstanding person, spiritual and civic values,” Hedges said.
After his arrest, Wilson was suspended without pay by Fire Chief Scott Lachance, but retired before a disciplinary hearing could be held.
An affidavit filed by the DEA to support the criminal complaint against Wilson alleged he engaged in several oxycodone and steroid transactions with an informant. The DEA recorded phone calls between Wilson and the informant allegedly setting up these transactions and discussing specific details regarding distribution-level quantities of oxycodone and steroids.