A Penobscot County man has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for conspiring to distribute large quantities of heroin throughout central Maine over a six month period.

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Don Grace, 54, of Etna, was sentenced Tuesday by Judge John A. Woodcock, Jr. in U.S. District Court in Bangor.  Grace will also serve eight years of supervised release.  He pleaded guilty on May 4, following his arrest in January.

According to court records, between August 2015 and January 2016, Grace conspired to traffic large quantities of heroin in the central Maine area.  Prosecutors said the man obtained the drug on a weekly basis from an out-of-state source and distributed it.

On January 25, agents arrested Grace during a traffic stop and seized 3,300 bags of heroin from his vehicle and 1,500 bags of heroin from his Etna residence.

US Attorney Thomas E. Delahanty II said Grace had been federally prosecuted 5 times before for felony drug offenses and for violating the terms of his supervised release.  Judge Woodcock noted that in his 13 years on the bench, Grace was the only defendant who he had to sentence on five occasions.

The case was investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, with assistance from Maine State Police and was investigated and prosecuted as part of the Department of Justice’s Strategy to Combat the Opioid Epidemic.