Four Philadelphia Men Charged in Connection with Nearly 50 Burglaries and Attempted Burglaries of Delaware Valley-Area Pharmacies
PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney William M. McSwain announced that William Limper, 41, Raul Rivera, 42, Michael Dombrowski, 30, and Robert Hopkins, 24, all of Philadelphia, were charged by a Second Superseding Indictment for their roles in a conspiracy to burglarize or attempt to burglarize 49 pharmacies in the City of Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs over the last five years. The charges include 36 counts of pharmacy burglary; 13 counts of attempted pharmacy burglary; one count each of possession with intent to distribute controlled substances; one count each of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime; and related conspiracy, drug and gun offenses.
The Second Superseding Indictment alleges that Limper, Rivera, Dombrowski, and Hopkins were involved in a conspiracy from November 2014 until April 2019 to burglarize pharmacies in order to steal controlled substances – primarily Schedule II opiates such as oxycodone and Percocet tablets – for the purpose of distributing them to others for profit. The defendants allegedly forced entry into the pharmacies at nighttime with burglary tools such as crow bars and Halligan bars (specialized forcible entry tools used by law enforcement and firefighters) when the pharmacies were closed. The defendants concealed their identities with clothing and masks over their faces, and used scanners to monitor police activity and two-way radios to communicate with each other during the burglaries.
As alleged, the defendants thoroughly planned and executed these burglaries in great detail. For example, in order to facilitate quick getaways in the event that they were detected by witnesses or law enforcement, the defendants used stolen Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT sport utility vehicles (SUV) with powerful engines. When they were not using the stolen vehicles to perpetrate burglaries, the defendants concealed the vehicles in garages in a commercial storage lot, where they also hid their tools and the clothing they wore during the burglaries to avoid detection by law enforcement. After each of the burglaries, the defendants divided the stolen narcotics among themselves for the purpose of selling them to others.
“These charges are a huge blow to this sophisticated burglary and drug distribution organization,” said U.S. Attorney McSwain. “As alleged, these defendants were able to carry out their conspiracy for years – terrorizing communities and small businesses all across the region, and adding to the scourge of the opioid epidemic for their own benefit. I want to thank the large group of law enforcement partners who worked together in a highly coordinated effort using targeted investigative techniques to make this case possible.”
“The FBI remains committed to fighting the opioid crisis on all fronts,” said Michael T. Harpster, special agent in charge of the Philadelphia Division. “Today's indictment makes it clear that the the FBI and or law enforcement partners will work tirelessly to prevent violent drug gangs from terrorizing our communities, and we will bring them to justice when they do.”
If convicted, defendant William Limper faces a maximum possible sentence of life imprisonment, a mandatory-minimum five years’ imprisonment consecutive to any other sentence imposed, a mandatory minimum six years’ supervised release up to lifetime supervised release, a $16,750,000 fine, and a $5,300 special assessment; defendant Raul Rivera faces a maximum 1,010 years’ imprisonment, a mandatory-minimum three years up to lifetime supervised release, a $14,250,000 fine, and a $5,100 special assessment; defendant Michael Dombrowski faces a maximum 310 years’ imprisonment, a mandatory-minimum three years up to lifetime supervised release, a $5,500,000 fine, and a $1,600 special assessment; and defendant Robert Hopkins faces a maximum 470 years’ imprisonment, a mandatory-minimum three years up to lifetime supervised release, a $7,500,000 fine, and a $2,400 special assessment.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Philadelphia Police Department, the Bristol Township Police Department, the Upper Southampton Police Department, the Chester Police Department, the Lower Merion Police Department, the Upper Chichester Township Police Department, the Folcroft Police Department, the Sharon Hill Police Department, the Central Bucks Regional Police Department, the Hatboro Police Department, the Upper Darby Police Department, the Haverford Township Police Department, the Ridley Township Police Department, the Bristol Borough Police Department, the Lower Southampton Township Police Department, the Falls Township Police Department, the Springfield Township Police Department, the Marple Township Police Department, and the Warrington Township Police Department, and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Thomas M. Zaleski.
An indictment, information, or criminal complaint is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.