East Spencer man sentenced in federal court, others face federal charges

Published 11:18 am Thursday, November 29, 2018

An East Spencer man was sentenced to prison Wednesday on firearms charges stemming from his arrest in 2016.

Dwayne Means, 26, of the 400 block of Royal Street in East Spencer was sentenced to 54 months in prison. The case arose from a December 2016 investigation by members of the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office Special Investigations Unit.

Means’ sentence is set to start at the conclusion of his current state prison sentence.

Means is being held by the N.C. Department of Public Safety on a nearly two-year sentence for a 2017 conviction for felony common law robbery and second-degree burglary. That sentence is expected to end in early 2019, and he will then begin serving his federal sentence.

Cross-sworn Federal Taskforce Officers with the Sheriff’s Office also arrested several men on federal drug charges:

• Eddy Peralta of the 80 block of Ninth Avenue in Newark, New Jersey, is charged with distribution of methamphetamine. Peralta, also known as Andy Peralta and Endy Peralta, was convicted on sexual battery charges in Florida in 2001.

• Alfredo Vello, 52, of the 100 block of Plaza Oaks Road, Yadkinville, is charged with distribution of methamphetamine and illegal re-entry into the United States. Vello, a Mexican national, was charged in June after a six-month investigation.

In January, detectives began an investigation of meth ice distribution in Yadkin, Rowan and Davie counties.

Undercover officers with the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office made multiple purchases of meth ice from Vello.

• Rodolfo Vargas-Bentiez is charged with conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and illegal re-entry into the United States. Rodolfo Vargas-Bentiez, also known as Luciano Vargas-Benitez, 34, was originally charged alongside Vello in June.

• Curtis Cowan, 53, of the 100 block of Eldon Lane, Salisbury, is charged with distribution of heroin.

Cowan has a number of previous convictions that date to 1992 that include felony possession of a controlled substance, driving while license permanently revoked, assault on a female, common law robbery, soliciting indecent liberties with a child, felony second-degree kidnapping, felony extortion, felony insurance fraud, stalking and cyberstalking.

Authorities said all the suspects have been placed in federal custody.