64 Individuals Charged With Drug Trafficking In Puerto Rico
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – On September 18, a federal grand jury in the District of Puerto Rico returned 16 indictments against 64 defendants charging them with conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, announced Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez, United States Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) - Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); United States Postal Inspection Service; United States Postal Service - Office of Inspector General, North East Area, San Juan Field Office; FBI, and the Puerto Rico Police Department jointly investigated this case as part of the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF).
The indictments allege that since 2010, the organization purchased and sold wholesale quantities of heroin, cocaine, and marihuana. They used the United States Postal Service to purchase and mail these drugs to and from various distributors in the Continental United States.
United States Postal Employees were aware of the shipments of controlled substances and would hold the packages for pick-up by co-conspirators or divert them to other members of the conspiracy.
Members of the conspiracy included police officers who would provide information regarding investigations of the conspirators, interfere in police investigations for the benefit of the conspirators, provide information to the conspirators on how to avoid police detection, and use and leverage their official positions as law enforcement officers in furtherance of the conspiracy.
Additionally, the conspirators sold street quantity amounts of cocaine, crack, and marihuana at drug points in Río Grande, Puerto Rico.
The conspirators facilitated the acquisition of firearms and ammunition, including machine guns, and would use force, violence, and threats in order to intimidate rival drug trafficking organizations. Several of the members of the conspiracy have been charged with possessing firearms in furtherance of drug trafficking crimes and money laundering.
The defendants are: Ignacio Rivera-Hernández, a.k.a. “Nacho/Gordo/Willy/El Patrón”; José M. Santiago-Robles, a.k.a. “Mosco”; Luis Aponte-Hernández, a.k.a. “Luis Loiza”; Juan Ruiz-Velázquez, a.k.a. “Drexler”; Erick Fuentes-Correa, a.k.a. “El Barbu”; Eric Raúl Piñero-Robles, a.k.a. “Pulga”; Lamont Marquese Wright; Mack Devon Boone, a.k.a. “Money Mack”; Luz María Maldonado; Julio César González-Andino, a.k.a. “Fredito”; Raymond Rodríguez-Pabón, a.k.a. “Raymond Cassiano”; Sergio Quiñonez-Ocasio, a.k.a. “Sergito”; Ronnie Medina-García, a.k.a. “Rony”; Rolando José Sierra-Velázquez, a.k.a. “Rolo”; Ángel Omar Rivera-Ferrer, a.k.a. “Omy”; John Leonardo-Jiménez, a.k.a. “Ole”; Alberto Hiraldo, a.k.a. “Quenepa”; Abner Santana-Rosa; Juana Rosa-Pimentel, a.k.a. “Jenny”; Josué Castro-Rivera, a.k.a. “Tito El Loco/Macolin”; Juan Luis Santana-Rosa, a.k.a. “Topin”; Andrés Santana-Rosa, a.k.a. “Andresito/Kiko”; Luis Ángel Cruz-Rosa; Miguel A. Montijo-Hernaiz, a.k.a. “Pollo”; Sergio De León-Dávila; Elvin Serrano-Vega, a.k.a. “Ñaña”; Kidany Cardona-Benitez, a.k.a. “Pucho”; Luis Omar Díaz-Vázquez, a.k.a. “Wiso”; Noel García-Marín, a.k.a. “Noelito”; Noel García-Rivera, a.k.a. “Tito Valentin”; Julio C. Rivera-Hernández; Carlos M. Pabón-López; Nicolás Loaces-Idelfonso, a.k.a. “Goldo Nicky”; José R. López-Rosario, a.k.a. “Cheo/Montana López”; Félix O. Pantojas-Arizmendi, a.k.a. “Fili”; Samuel Medina-Rosa, a.k.a. “Samy Melón”; Christopher Ceballo-Cepeda; Eduardo Barajas-Durán, a.k.a. “Leo/Neo”; FNU-LNU “Jessy”; FNU-LNU “Fredy”; Michael Ramírez-Torréns, a.k.a. “M”; Ismael Mailo-Silva; Samuel Encarnación-Nieves, a.k.a. “Chino”; Johnnell Rosario-Feliciano, a.k.a. “Lionel”; Joel Rodríguez-Meléndez; Gerald Hernández-Heredia; Victor Loperena-Méndez; María E. Medina-Rosa, a.k.a. “Enid”; José Manuel Rodríguez-Rodríguez, a.k.a. “Duait”; Carlos J. González-La Santa, a.k.a. “Jova”; Modesto Matos-Vizcarrondo, a.k.a. “Mode”; Edgardo Román-Rodríguez, a.k.a. “Galdo”; Nichirien Llanos-Figueroa, a.k.a. “Nichi”; Héctor Jesús Rondón, a.k.a. “Abayalde”; José De león-Lozada, a.k.a. “Pepón”; Deyanira Pérez-Rodríguez; Luis Felipe García-Ocasio, a.k.a. “Felo”; Joseph González, a.k.a. “Yopi”; Christabel M. Hernández-Núñez, a.k.a. “Gordita”; Abigail Quiñonez-Fuentes; Jacob Quiñones-Fuentes, a.k.a. “Acosta”; Geovanny Diarza-Flores, a.k.a. “El Veterano”; Lester Raffuci-Ojeda, a.k.a. “Lesty”; and Oswaldo Galindo-Zapien.
“These indictments and the arrests this morning are a significant victory in our efforts to combat drug trafficking, money laundering and violent crime,” said Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez, U.S. Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico. “We will continue to conduct investigations with our counterparts to dismantle these criminal organizations and to send a clear message that drugs, firearms, and violence will not be tolerated in our neighborhoods.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Marc Chattah is in charge of the prosecution of the cases. If convicted the defendants face a minimum sentence of 10 years, and up to life in prison. Indictments contain only charges and are not evidence of guilt. Defendants are presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty.
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