Essex County jury convicts Irvington man of drug distribution

IRVINGTON, NJ — An Essex County jury has convicted Roland “Chalo” Roberts, 34, of Irvington of two counts, one for possession of heroin and another for possession of heroin with intent to distribute.

Following a trial before Superior Court Judge Nancy Sivilli, the jury deliberated for six hours during two days before finding Roberts guilty of possession of 85 decks of heroin with intent to distribute. The crimes occurred on March 25, 2015, in Irvington. Roberts was found not guilty of distribution within a 1,000 feet of a school.

When he is sentenced on these offenses, Roberts faces five to 10 years on that charge, according to Assistant Prosecutor Tony Gutierrez who tried the case.

Roberts has four other open cases, three involving possession or distribution of narcotics and a fourth involving a possession of a gun.

Prior to this most recent conviction, Roberts was arrested 28 times and convicted 15 times of felonies. Most of those cases involved possession or distribution of a controlled dangerous substance.

Gutierrez said they will be back in court on Friday, May 19, for a status conference on the open cases.

Gutierrez thanked Irvington Police Capt. Lester Wilson and Detective Barry Zepeda for their hard work and professionalism in the successful resolution of this case.