Antonella Barba, best known for her appearance as a contestant during the sixth season of “American Idol,” was found in a vehicle with almost 2 pounds of fentanyl last October. On Tuesday, she pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute the synthetic opioids in Norfolk, The Virginian-Pilot reported.
Police investigated Barba’s boss in September 2018 after they received a tip revealing he was a source of “kilogram quantities of cocaine and heroin,” according to court documents obtained by the Pilot. Officers then received word that a man named Justin Michael Isaac was planning on traveling from Washington, D.C., to Norfolk, Virginia, that October to make a delivery.
He later, however, decided to send someone else in his place — 32-year-old singer Antonella Barba.
Investigators patrolled a Norfolk stash house where the drugs were purported to be delivered the evening of October 11, and at around 11:00 p.m., they spotted Barba alone in a vehicle parked nearby.
When they approached the car, Barba was in the driver’s seat, and on the front passenger floorboard, there was a shoe box with 830.9 grams of fentanyl inside. Fentanyl, according to the United States Drug Enforcement Administration, is 80 to 100 times stronger than morphine. Just 0.002 grams can be lethal to an individual.
Barba was initially charged with selling or intending to sell at least 100 grams of heroin, Asbury Park Press reported, and she pleaded not guilty. She was out on bond in February when she was taken into custody on federal charges of conspiring to distribute heroin, fentanyl and cocaine, reported NBC News.
Barba’s sentence hearing is scheduled for November, and Isaac is scheduled to plead guilty to related charges in August. Barba's guilty plea requires a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison.
Aside from her top 16 "American Idol" appearance, Babra has also been featured “Fear Factor," the 2017 movie “All About the Money,” and was brought on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” along with other “Idol” contestants to be featured in a “Where Are They Now” segment.
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