Drug dealer from Barrie gets five years following drug bust in Sudbury

A Barrie man has been sentenced to five years in jail after pleading guilty for his role in a major drug bust in Greater Sudbury in August 2021.

Marlon Carelse-Brown, 33, pled guilty to fentanyl possession for the purpose of trafficking in the Ontario Court of Justice in Sudbury on Nov. 7, 2022.

At his sentencing hearing on Tuesday, defence lawyer Glenn Sandberg and Crown prosecutor Denys Bradley presented a joint submission determining that a five-year sentence was appropriate.

According to Sandberg, the sentencing agreement was the result of a "long and intense" discussion between the two parties.

As a result of time already served in pre-sentence custody, Carelse-Brown will serve over two more years (782 days) in a federal penitentiary. He was credited additional days of time served, shortening his remaining sentence, because a significant portion of his time in custody was marked by strict COVID-19 restrictions.

"COVID play a big factor in our calculation," said Bradley, the prosecutor. "Between August 2021 and January 2022, they were locked down. Conditions were harsh and visits with loved ones were limited. After January, conditions did improve a bit, but not by much and visits were still limited."

Carelse-Brown's decision to enter a guilty plea without seeking a trial also mitigated the length of his sentence, said Sandberg.

According to an agreed statement of facts entered last November, in June of 2021, Greater Sudbury Police and Ontario Provincial Police were tipped that several individuals were trafficking cocaine and fentanyl in the city. An investigation was opened, involving significant surveillance.

On Aug. 28, 2021, police obtained and executed search warrants on two residences, on Martindale Road and Murray Street.

Carelse-Brown was found in a vehicle in the driveway of the Martindale Road residence with another man, 33-year-old Soulaimon Cadogan.

Both men were arrested.

Each was found in possession of 150 grams of fentanyl. Inside the vehicle, there was $2,400 in cash and five cellphones.

At the Murray Street residence, officers found $1,740 in cash, more drugs, cutting agents, digital scales, nine cellphones, and packaging materials.

In addition to jail, Carelse-Brown's sentence also includes a lifetime weapons prohibition order and he will be required to provide DNA samples and forfeit all materials seized during the investigation.

In his address to the court, Carelse-Brown apologized for his actions.

"I want to say I'm sorry to any families who were hurt or who lost someone to addiction," he said. "I sorry to my family for the hardship I caused during my incarceration. I want to thank you, Your Honour, for your leniency. I want to put this behind me, move forward, and be a better father. The charges are not a reflection of my true character."

Justice Andrew Buttazzoni said he accepted the sentence and agreed it was appropriate for the crime.

"This offence is very serious," he said to Carelse-Brown. "Drugs of this amount and nature are a scourge on our society today, and people who deal and provide it must be dealt with. The sentence must reflect the abhorrence of the product."

The sentencing of the other man caught and arrested in the same vehicle as Carelse-Brown has been delayed due to scheduling conflicts.

Soulaimon Cadogan, who also pled guilty last November, was also scheduled to be sentenced on Tuesday. His matter has been adjourned to March 23, where a new date will be set for sentencing.

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Twitter: @mia_rjensen

Mia Jensen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Sudbury Star