Farmington Man Arraigned on Federal Narcotics Trafficking Charges
Organ Prosecuted Under Federal “Worst of the Worst” Anti-Violence Initiative and HOPE Initiative which Seeks to Reduce Opioid-Related Deaths in New Mexico
ALBUQUERQUE – Robert Organ, Sr., 47, of Farmington, N.M., was arraigned this morning in federal court in Albuquerque, N.M., on an indictment charging him with heroin and methamphetamine trafficking offenses. During this morning’s proceedings, Organ entered a not guilty plea to the indictment. He remains in custody pending trial.
The charges against Organ were announced by U.S. Attorney Damon P. Martinez, Special Agent in Charge Will R. Glaspy of the DEA’s El Paso Division and Commander Kyle Dowdy of the HIDTA Region II Narcotics Task Force.
Organ was arrested on May 2, 2016, on a criminal complaint charging him with possession of heroin and methamphetamine with intent to distribute. Court records reflect that on March 23, 2016, agents of the HIDTA Region II Narcotics Task Force executed a state arrest warrant on Organ for narcotics violations. During a search o incident to arrest, agents allegedly found that Organ was in possession of $1,896, 1.7 grams of methamphetamine, 0.9 grams of heroin and drug paraphernalia. Agents also allegedly found 64 grams of heroin in three different packages, 20 grams of methamphetamine, 13 grams of marijuana, 14 Buprenorphine hydrochloride pills, 5 Alprazolam pills, two cellular phones and drug paraphernalia inside Organ’s vehicle.
Organ was subsequently charged in a two-count indictment with possession of heroin and methamphetamine with intent to distribute on March 23, 2016, in San Juan County, N.M.
If convicted, Organ faces a statutory maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison. Charges in complaints and indictments are merely accusations and criminal defendants are presumed innocent unless found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This case was investigated the Albuquerque office of the DEA and the HIDTA Region II Narcotics Task Force. The HIDTA Region II Narcotics Task Force is comprised of officers and investigators from the Farmington Police Department, San Juan County Sheriff’s Office, Bloomfield Police Department and Aztec Police Department, and is part of the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) program was created by Congress with the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988. HIDTA is a program of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) which provides assistance to federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies operating in areas determined to be critical drug-trafficking regions of the United States and seeks to reduce drug trafficking and production by facilitating coordinated law enforcement activities and information sharing.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul H. Spiers is prosecuting the case under a federal anti-violence initiative that targets “the worst of the worst” offenders for federal prosecution. Under this initiative, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and federal law enforcement agencies work with New Mexico’s District Attorneys and state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies to target violent or repeat offenders primarily based on their prior criminal convictions for federal prosecution with the goal of removing repeat offenders from communities in New Mexico for as long as possible. Because New Mexico’s violent crime rate, on a per capita basis, is one of the highest in the nation, New Mexico’s law enforcement community is collaborating to target repeat offenders from counties with the highest violent crime rates, including San Jan County, N.M., under this initiative.
The case is also being prosecuted under the HOPE Initiative, which 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 http://www.HopeInitiativeNM.org.