Addiction agency counselor facing drug charges

By By JOHN CHRISTOFFERSEN

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — A counselor for the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services is facing charges that he conspired to sell painkillers.

Brian Earl of North Haven pleaded not guilty Wednesday to conspiring to distribute oxycodone and oxymorphone, which has a higher potency. Federal prosecutors say the 39-year-old Earl supplied large quantities of the drugs to 35-year-old James Costanzo of Ansonia.

An attorney for Costanzo, who is accused of selling the drugs from his house, said he would plead not guilty Thursday.

An arrest affidavit says Earl met a youth he supplied the drugs to at or near his job in Bridgeport. It says Earl spent $68,000 since June to buy a BMW and a house while only earning a yearly salary of $58,684.

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