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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Jersey

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Five Defendants Arraigned In 15-Kilogram Cocaine Distribution Conspiracy

NEWARK, N.J. – Five men who were arrested in California with 15 kilograms of cocaine bound for New Jersey were arraigned today in Newark federal court, Acting U.S. Attorney William E. Fitzpatrick announced.

Froylan Gil Palomares, a/k/a “Froilan Gill,” 39, a Mexican national; Efrain Cardenas Alcaras, a/k/a “Ifrain Alcaras Cardenas,” 39, of Sunnyside, Washington; Sergio Kevin Calvio Ayala, a/k/a “Kevin Calveo” 28, of Fontana, California; Luis Tomas Alba Urena, 53, of Prospect Park, New Jersey; and Javier Armando Cortes Quintal, 48, a Mexican national, are charged by indictment with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine. The defendants were arraigned in Newark federal court before U.S. District Judge William H. Walls and were detained.

According to documents filed in this case:

From Aug. 31, 2016, through Feb. 8, 2017, law enforcement officers monitored communications between Alba and others. Those communications led to the seizure of approximately one kilogram of cocaine that Alba and Quintal allegedly sold to another individual in California on Sept. 26, 2016. Alba, Quintal, and the individual later negotiated the sale of kilograms of cocaine that the individual would transport to New Jersey. After agreeing to the details of the cocaine delivery, Alba and the individual traveled from New Jersey to California to conduct the transaction.

On Feb. 8, 2017, law enforcement officers observed Quintal, Alba, Gil Palomares, Calvio and Cardenas Alcaras meet with the individual in the parking lot of a retail establishment in Burbank, California. Cardenas Alcaras and Calvio allegedly directed the individual to the interior of a Jeep to inspect the drug shipment. Once the presence of cocaine in the Jeep was confirmed, law enforcement arrested the defendants and seized 15 kilograms of cocaine from the scene, along with a .380 caliber pistol.

Each defendant faces a mandatory minimum term of 10 years in prison and a potential maximum sentence of life in prison. The defendants also face a maximum $10 million fine.

Acting U.S. Attorney Fitzpatrick credited special agents with the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Timothy Gallagher in Newark, with the investigation.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Melissa Wangenheim of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division in Newark.

The charge and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Defense counsel:

Froylan Gil Palomares: Mark Leibman Esq.

Efrain Cardenas Alcaras: Michael V. Calabro Esq.

Sergio Kevin Calvio Ayala: Bruce S. Rosen Esq.

Luis Tomas Alba Urena: Linwood A. Jones Esq.

Javier Armando Cortes Quintal: Julian Wilsey Esq.

Component(s): 
Press Release Number: 
17-190
Updated June 21, 2017