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Justice News

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

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Albuquerque Man Sentenced to Prison for Federal Heroin Trafficking Conviction

Case Prosecuted as Part of HOPE Initiative which Seeks to Reduce the Number of Opioid-Related Deaths in New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE – Ramon Phillip Baca, 44, of Albuquerque, N.M., was sentenced today in federal court to 57 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for his heroin trafficking conviction. 

Baca was indicted on Dec. 1, 2015, and charged with distributing heroin on May 20, 2015 and June 16, 2015, in Bernalillo County, N.M.

On May 3, 2016, Baca pled guilty to distributing heroin, and admitted that on June 16, 2015, he met with an individual who, unbeknownst to him was working with the FBI, with the intention of selling him two ounces of heroin in exchange for $1,300. 

This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of the FBI and the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office with assistance from the New Mexico Corrections Department.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Shana B. Long prosecuted the case as part of the New Mexico Heroin and Opioid Prevention and Education (HOPE) Initiative.

The HOPE Initiative was launched in January 2015 by the UNM Health Sciences Center and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in response to the national opioid epidemic, which has had a disproportionately devastating impact on New Mexico.  Opioid addiction has taken a toll on public safety, public health and the economic viability of our communities.  Working in partnership with the DEA, the Bernalillo County Opioid Accountability Initiative, Healing Addiction in our Community (HAC), the Albuquerque Public Schools and other community stakeholders, HOPE’s principal goals are to protect our communities from the dangers associated with heroin and opioid painkillers and reducing the number of opioid-related deaths in New Mexico. 

The HOPE Initiative is comprised of five components:  (1) prevention and education; (2) treatment; (3) law enforcement; (4) reentry; and (5) strategic planning.  HOPE’s law enforcement component is led by the Organized Crime Section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the DEA in conjunction with their federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement partners.  Targeting members of major heroin and opioid trafficking organizations for investigation and prosecution is a priority of the HOPE Initiative.  Learn more about the New Mexico HOPE Initiative at

Drug Trafficking
Updated August 4, 2016