May 8, 2002

MAY 8, 2002

CONTACT: STEPHANIE ANDERSON, District Attorney 207-871-8384 Lea-Anne Jameson, Assistant Attorney General 207-871-8384

Cumberland County District Attorney Stephanie Anderson and Attorney General Steven Rowe announced that Lucas Gragg, 21, of Lewiston was sentenced to seven years in prison with all but three years suspended followed by three years probation for trafficking in heroin. Superior Court Justice Roland Cole handed down the sentence yesterday. Anderson stated that the stiff sentence was uncommon for a trafficker with no prior convictions, but was wholly warranted by the heinousness of the crime and Gragg's unrepentant attitude. Assistant Attorney General Lea-Anne Jameson, who is assigned to the District Attorney's Office, handled the case for the State.

On April 29, 2001, Maine State Police and the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency arrested Gragg on the Maine Turnpike in Scarborough en route to Lewiston on his return from Lowell, Massachusetts, with 1000 bags of heroin valued at well over $20,000.

Virtually all heroin involved in Lewiston-Auburn area crimes since September of 2000 can be attributed to Gragg and his co-defendant John Nauyokas, also 21 and of Lewiston. Prior to that date heroin was not prevalent in that area. According to court documents Lucas Gragg built his heroin trade by finding "fresh new kids" giving them free "dope" to get them "hooked" to turn them into "customers for life." He also targeted young people attending all night dance parties known as "raves." He gave away the first two bags as samples to children and young adults between the ages of 16-20, knowing they would come back for more. The price per bag thereafter was $20 to $30.

"Mr. Gragg epitomizes the worst type of drug trafficker - targeting children and maliciously turning them, their families and their communities down a path of addiction and destruction for personal profit," stated Anderson. "The numbers of lives he has destroyed is enormous. But even to this day, Gragg is adamantly unrepentant. This attitude, coupled with his opportunistic preying on people, warranted this stiff sentence. Justice Cole absolutely did the right thing. We need to continue to raise the sentencing bar for this type of case in Maine. If we don't, we can kiss our children and their futures goodbye."

Assistant Attorney General Lea-Anne Jameson said, "This case holds another lesson about raves for parents and young people: rave attendees are the targets of aggressive, predatory drug dealers."