U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Boston arrested one of ICE’s Top 10 Most Wanted in the United States, a previously removed immigration fugitive citizen of Haiti who had been convicted on multiple counts of narcotics possession and trafficking. The fugitive was charged with illegal reentry in federal court in Boston, it was announced by ERO Boston Field Office Director Todd M. Lyons and Acting United States Attorney for the Massachusetts Nathaniel R. Mendell on March 24.
Friendly Grandoit, 42, was arrested on March 19, 2021, and charged with one count of illegal re-entry into the United States after deportation. Grandoit was detained following an initial appearance before U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Marianne B. Bowler.
“The men and women of ERO Boston can be very proud of this arrest, which has removed an aggravated felon and known narcotics trafficker from our streets,” said Lyons. “ERO remains committed to apprehending dangerous criminals who continue to pose a real threat to public safety. This is another example of the dedicated work of our enforcement officers who never give up on their mission of protecting our communities throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and all of New England.”
According to charging documents, in 2005 Grandoit was encountered in pre-trial detention by immigration officials while pending trial on drug distribution charges in Middlesex County. Grandoit was convicted in Sept. 2006 of trafficking in a controlled substance and sentenced to three years in prison. Upon completion of his sentence, Grandoit was placed into removal proceedings and deported to Haiti in July 2008.
Sometime after his removal, Grandoit illegally reentered the United States. In Sept. 2019, Grandoit was arrested and charged in Woburn District Court with distribution of cocaine, identity fraud and operating with a suspended license and was detained. In April 2020, Grandoit posted bail and was released from custody. ICE, who had filed a detainer with the jail, was not notified. On March 19, 2021, Grandoit was arrested in this case.
The charge of illegal reentry provides for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Kenneth G. Shine of the Office of United States Attorney for Massachusetts’ Major Crimes Unit is prosecuting the case. The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.