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Press Release

Central Florida Cocaine Trafficking Ring Dismantled

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Tampa, Florida – United States Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez announces that 13 individuals have been sentenced in connection with their involvement in an interstate cocaine distribution conspiracy. During the investigation of this case, law enforcement seized more than seven kilograms of cocaine; nine firearms, including an assault rifle and shotgun; hundreds of rounds of ammunition; approximately $40,000 in drug proceeds; and a currency counter.

According to court documents, from November 27, 2017, through April 18, 2018, leaders of the organization oversaw the shipment of more than 20 kilograms of cocaine into Florida from Puerto Rico. After packaging the cocaine for distribution, the conspirators provided the drugs to street level distributors who then sold it in Tampa, Orlando, and elsewhere.

The following individuals have been sentenced in connection with this case: 

Name Age, Residence Term of Imprisonment

William Leverne Norton

41, Tampa

14 years

Jesus Manuel Rodriguez

31, Brandon

12 years, 7 months

Bryan Gomez Nevarez

31, Avon Park

11 years, 3 months

Luis Enrique Hernandez Quinones

29, Davenport

11 years, 3 months

Avisys Lee Jackson

28, Tampa

10 years, 10 months

Pedro Luis Ramos Burgos

26, Kissimmee

10 years

Javier Albaladejo Lopez

24, Tampa

10 years

Hector Jose Carrasquillo Perez

26, Cataño, Puerto Rico

10 years

Jose Angel Mendoza, Jr.

29, Tampa

8 years, 1 month

Antonio Soul Gonzalez

41, Tampa

7 years, 9 months

Ismael Pagan Marrero

44, Orlando

5 years, 10 months

Edgar Hernandez

28, Tampa

4 years, 3 months

Henry Coira

31, Avon Park

5 years, 10 months

“This investigation represents our commitment to keeping communities safe from destructive drug trafficking enterprises,” said Bryan Vorndran, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Tampa Division. “I commend the federal, state and local law enforcement cooperation in getting the job done and disrupting a major supplier of cocaine in Central Florida.”

“As a result of the collaborative efforts and strong partnership between our local, state, and federal partners, justice has indeed been served by ensuring that these convicted drug traffickers are no longer left on the playing field to inflict harm to the law abiding citizens of the community,” said Adolphus P. Wright, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Miami Field Division. “We remain committed and will continue to work tirelessly with our law enforcement partners throughout the region to keep our communities safe from illicit drug trafficking and the associated dangers which follow.”

The U.S. Postal Inspection Service is committed to eradicating illegal drugs and their proceeds from the U.S. Mail,” said U.S. Postal Inspector Damien Kraebel. “Dismantling this conspiracy furthers our mission to help protect employees and customers from the violence related to drug trafficking, and to inhibit the spread of illegal substances into neighborhoods across America.”

“The diligent work done by law enforcement to bring down this illegal operation should be commended,” said FDLE’s Tampa Special Agent in Charge Mark Brutnell. “FDLE is proud to be a part of this effort to take drugs and guns off of our streets, and help make all of us safer.”

“Taking down a sophisticated criminal operation requires teamwork,” said Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan. “Our streets are safer today due to efforts of our agencies working together. We’re grateful to the U.S. Attorney for the successful prosecution that will put these individuals behind bars for a long time.”

These cases were investigated by a multi-agency task force through the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF). The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking, weapons trafficking and money laundering organizations, and those primarily responsible for the nation’s illegal drug supply. Participating agencies in this OCDETF operation included the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Tampa Police Department, the Plant City Police Department, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. The cases were prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Carlton C. Gammons.

Updated April 18, 2023

Drug Trafficking