Rakeshkumar Patel was not granted bail at a hearing at 3rd District Court Thursday, June 26, and returned to the Adult Correctional Institutions. The 3rd District Court judge heard arguments from both the defense and prosecution on whether or not to release Patel on bail and decided to hold him without bail until a hearing July 10.
Patel, 40, of Warwick, was arrested June 18 after a six-month investigation by East Greenwich police prompted by tips from “various sources” that illegal drugs were being sold at his store, East Greenwich Farm, 360 Main Street, according to the police report.
One of the sources was an informant whose information in the past has resulted in several narcotics violation arrests. Patel is the owner and manager of EG Farm. The only other employees are his wife and his father, neither of whom have been arrested.
In February, police began making a series of “controlled purchases” using their informant. In each case, the informant would enter the store, go to the front counter, and ask for either “one” or “a bag.” The person behind the counter would then retrieve a small plastic package from a manila envelope from behind the counter and hand it to the informant, who would pay for the item with EGPD-supplied money. The informant would then leave the store and meet up with EGPD at a predetermined location.
The purchased items were all in similar packaging and went by the names “Crazy Monkey,” (6 grams), “Bizarro” (3.5 grams), and “Scooby Snax” (amount omitted in the police report).
From the police report: “With the exception of one purchase of ‘Scooby Snax,’ each package submitted for analysis … returned positive for the presence ofXLR11, a Schedule 1 controlled substance.”
The informant told police in late March that Patel was selling amphetamines at the mini-mart. Police arranged for the informant to buy some and in the first week of April, the informant used $40 of EGPD money to buy five pills. The pills (amphetamine salts ER, or Adderall) were turned over to police and sent for testing; results are not yet back.
On April 19, EGPD arranged to have an undercover Newport police officer try to buy narcotics at EG Farm. The officer paid Patel $21.40 in exchange for a small bag of “Bizarro,” which later tested positive for the presence of XLR11.
The undercover Newport officer tried to buy from Patel again on April 29, but on this day, Patel told the officer he was out but “may have some” the next day. The officer asked if Patel had any marijuana, to which Patel responded, “Impossible.” After the officer left, Patel got in his car and followed her as she walked up Spring Street, south on Peirce Street, then Patel drove back to the store. According to the report, Patel later told the informant he thought the undercover officer was a police officer.
With both an arrest warrant for Patel and a search warrant for EG Farm, police raided the store on June 18 at about 2:15 p.m., assisted by Newport police and an investigator from the state department of taxation. A search of the building turned up $54,807.50 in cash, which was seized. No illegal drugs were found.