Heroin trafficker sentenced to federal prison

MARQUETTE — A Chicago man arrested last year after a narcotics investigation in the western U.P. has received his sentence in U.S. District Court.

U.S. Attorney Patrick Miles announced that 31-year-old Raymond Bowser was given five years in federal prison and twelve years of supervised release. Bowser pleaded guilty to the distribution of heroin within 1,000 feet of a playground in December.

An investigation conducted by the Gogebic-Iron Area Narcotics Team in February of 2015 resulted in Bowser’s initial arrest. Officials say GIANT officers made an undercover purchase of heroin from Bowser in Bessemer. He was arrested the next day on an unrelated domestic violence charge. During the arrest, Bowser provided a false name and a fake Illinois driver’s license bearing his photo. He was released on bond and disappeared.

GIANT then learned Bowser’s true identity and the fact that he had a 2008 federal drug conviction in Minnesota. They also learned that he was still on federal supervised release that prohibited him from leaving that state.

Bowser was encountered during another undercover heroin purchase in April of 2015 in Bessemer. After the purchase, GIANT officers executed a search warrant at Bowser’s Bessemer home, where they discovered a brick of heroin weighing around 35 grams. He was arrested on State of Michigan charges and then turned over to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

Rather than heading straight to prison, Bowser will be transported to Douglas County, Wisconsin, to face heroin-related charges there. He will also be sent to the U.S. District Court in Minnesota to answer for violations of his supervised release.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Maarten Vermaat prosecuted the case against Bowser.