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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Virginia

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Chesapeake Man Sentenced for Role in Drug Trafficking Conspiracy

NORFOLK, Va. – A Chesapeake man who arranged cocaine deals for a Honduran cocaine trafficker was sentenced today to four years in prison.

Joseph Jesus Grullon, 26, of Chesapeake, pleaded guilty on January 6. According to court documents, in 2014, Grullon resided in Chesapeake with his mother, Janette Elena Cruz Miller, and her boyfriend, German Alvarado Ponce, the leader of a drug trafficking organization that distributed multi-kilogram quantities of cocaine in the South Hampton Roads area of Virginia. Ponce, a native of Honduras who was in the United States illegally, did not speak English. Grullon assisted Ponce by making phone calls to Ponce’s English speaking drug customers and arranging drug transactions. On July 15, 2014, law enforcement learned Grullon had arranged a sale of 4.5 kilograms of cocaine with one of Ponce’s customers, Kenneth Bell, of Portsmouth. After the transaction was completed, law enforcement searched Bell’s residence and seized approximately 3.6 kilograms of powder cocaine, 394 grams of cocaine base and approximately $194,000 in cash. See table below for information on the co-defendants in this case.


Date of Guilty Plea

Date of Sentencing


Janette Elena Cruz Miller

March 16, 2015

June 24, 2015

18 months

German Alvarado Ponce

March 6, 2015

June 2, 2015

240 months

Kenneth Bell

Feb. 11, 2015

Aug. 6, 2015

120 months

Joseph Jesus Grullon

Jan. 6, 2017


48 months


Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Karl C. Colder, Special Agent in Charge for the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) Washington Field Division; Col. K.L. Wright, Chesapeake Chief of Police; and Tonya D. Chapman, Chief of Portsmouth Police Department, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Raymond A. Jackson. Assistant U.S. Attorney Darryl J. Mitchell prosecuted the case.


A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information is located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:16-cr-101.

Drug Trafficking
Updated April 6, 2017