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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 11, 2016

21 Members Of South Bronx Drug Trafficking Organization Charged With Narcotics Trafficking And Firearms Offenses

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, James J. Hunt, the Special Agent in Charge of the New York Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration (“DEA”), Angel M. Melendez, the Special Agent-in-Charge of the New York Field Office of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (“HSI”), and William J. Bratton, the Commissioner of the New York City Police Department (“NYPD”), announced the unsealing today of two Indictments charging a total of 21 members of a Bronx-based drug trafficking organization with narcotics trafficking and firearms offenses.  The organization operates in the vicinity of the Diego Beekman Houses (“Beekman Houses”) in the South Bronx and is charged in two separate indictments – United States v. Demetrius Flowers et al. and United States v. Damon Guadalupe et al.  Some of the members of the organization were affiliated with a subset of the Bloods Street Gang, known as the “Low Rider Brims,” and other members were affiliated with a gang known as the “Young Shooters.”  Of the 21 defendants charged in both Indictments, 14 are currently in custody, including 12 defendants who were arrested earlier today and yesterday as part of a coordinated takedown.  The defendants already in custody will be presented today before United States Magistrate Ronald L. Ellis in Manhattan federal court. 

In connection with today’s takedown, law enforcement agents also executed search warrants at three locations, including residential apartments in the area occupied by several of the defendants.  During the execution of those search warrants, agents recovered, among other items, crack, cocaine, marijuana, as well as ammunition and gang paperwork.   To date, in this case, agents and officers have seized, among other evidence, quantities of crack, cocaine, heroin, marijuana, prescription pills, as well as firearms, ammunition, and knives.  During the investigation, agents and officers also intercepted thousands of wiretapped calls, during many of which various members and associates of the drug trafficking organization discussed their gang and narcotics activities.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said:  “As alleged, these defendants, many of them members of street gangs, terrorized a South Bronx neighborhood with their drug dealing and violence.  Law enforcement has no duty more important than keeping our citizens safe.  As we have done in a number of recent takedowns with our law enforcement partners, we will continue to focus on those in our communities who are allegedly responsible for so much of the gang and gun violence.  All New Yorkers are entitled to live in neighborhoods free from constant drug-dealing and senseless violence.  That is why we bring actions like the one we bring today.”

DEA Special Agent-in-Charge James J. Hunt said:  “Law enforcement’s crackdown on gang related drug trafficking has netted 14 more arrests in New York City.  It is alleged that the ‘Low Rider Brims’ and ‘Young Shooters’ street gangs instilled fear and intimidation in the residents of the Beekman Housing Projects in the Bronx.  Not only did their alleged drug trafficking fuel drug addiction, their ‘armed and ready’ attitude resulted in numerous shootings and turf battles jeopardizing the safety of the neighboring schools and community.”

HSI Special Agent-in-Charge Angel M. Melendez said:  “Residents of the Mott Haven section of the Bronx can rest easier knowing members of a violent gang are under arrest and out of their neighborhood.  These gangs allegedly peddled drugs and used violence to protect their criminal enterprise.  HSI and its law enforcement partners are committed to combating violent criminal organizations and ensure the continued safety of our communities.”

Commissioner William J. Bratton said:  “This investigation is the latest example of a coordinated effort to combat drug trafficking, whose operations brought an influx of violence and firearms to the Bronx. I commend both our NYPD detectives and law enforcement partners for their hard work, which led to these arrests, and for their ongoing commitment to protect our neighborhoods.”

As alleged in the Indictments unsealed today in Manhattan federal court and in other court papers[1]:

The Beekman Houses is a private housing complex comprising approximately 38 apartment buildings in the Mott Haven neighborhood of the Bronx, New York.  From at least 2010 up to and including May 2016, the defendants operated a drug trafficking organization (the “Beekman Houses DTO”) in and around the Beekman Houses.  The Beekman Houses DTO trafficked in a variety of narcotics – including crack cocaine, heroin, and marijuana – on a daily basis.  Some of the members of the Beekman Houses DTO were affiliated with a subset of the Bloods Street Gang known as the “Low Rider Brims,” and other members were affiliated with a gang known as the “Young Shooters.”  The defendants sold narcotics in areas frequented by New York City’s most vulnerable citizens, including in the vicinity of New York City schools.   

In addition, members of the Beekman Houses DTO protected and maintained their drug business through the possession of firearms and acts of violence.  These included shootings that happened in broad daylight on public streets and into apartment buildings. 

*                      *                     *

Charts containing the names, ages, charges, and maximum penalties for the defendants are set forth below.  The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencings of the defendants will be determined by the judge.

Mr. Bharara praised the outstanding investigative work of the NYPD’s Bronx Gang Squad, HSI’s El Dorado Task Force, and the New York Field Division of the DEA, as well as the United States Marshals’ Service for its assistance in today’s arrests.  He also thanked the Bronx County District Attorney’s Office for their support in this ongoing investigation. 

This case is being handled by the Office’s Narcotics Unit.  Assistant United States Attorneys Eli J. Mark and Matthew Laroche are in charge of the prosecution.

The charges contained in the Indictments are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.       

 

 

 United States v. Demetrius Flowers, a/k/a “MoJo” et al.

 

COUNT

CHARGE

DEFENDANTS

MAX. PENALTIES

        1

Conspiracy to Distribute Narcotics

(including crack cocaine, heroin, and marijuana)

 

21 U.S.C. § 846

DEMETRIUS FLOWERS, a/k/a “Mojo,”

 

JOSEPH SMITH, a/k/a “Joe Lite,”

 

FRANK O’BRYANT, a/k/a “Frank White,”

 

ELADIO PADILLA, a/k/a “Nino,”

 

QUINZELL FRAZIER, a/k/a “Q Black,” a/k/a “Blizzy,”

 

JONATHAN SAEZ, a/k/a “John J,” a/k/a “J,”

 

BRIAN MCBETH, a/k/a “Smoove,”

 

FRANCISCO REYES, a/k/a “Bundlez,”

 

LUIS CRUZ, a/k/a “Manny,”

 

RALPHIE DEJESUS, a/k/a “Nuws,”

 

GABRIEL OCASIO, a/k/a “Fifty,”

 

RAHIM SOLANO, a/k/a “Rah,” a/k/a “Radio,”

 

MICHAEL MESTRE, a/k/a “Getty,” a/k/a “Wax,”

 

SAQURAN CURTIS, a/k/a “Esai,”

 

CHRISTOPHER NAPOLEONIS, a/k/a “Pudge,”

 

ROBERT WILSON, a/k/a “Rubar,” a/k/a “Lil Rubar,”

Life in prison with a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison

 

 

2

Use of Firearms in Furtherance of Narcotics Trafficking

 

18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A)

DEMETRIUS FLOWERS, a/k/a “Mojo,”

 

JOSEPH SMITH, a/k/a “Joe Lite,”

 

FRANK O’BRYANT, a/k/a “Frank White,”

 

ELADIO PADILLA, a/k/a “Nino,”

 

QUINZELL FRAZIER, a/k/a “Q Black,” a/k/a “Blizzy,”

 

JONATHAN SAEZ, a/k/a “John J,” a/k/a “J,”

 

BRIAN MCBETH, a/k/a “Smoove,”

 

FRANCISCO REYES, a/k/a “Bundlez,”

 

LUIS CRUZ, a/k/a “Manny,”

 

RALPHIE DEJESUS, a/k/a “Nuws,”

 

GABRIEL OCASIO, a/k/a “Fifty,”

 

RAHIM SOLANO, a/k/a “Rah,” a/k/a “Radio,”

 

MICHAEL MESTRE, a/k/a “Getty,” a/k/a “Wax,”

Life in prison with a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison

 

 

3

Felon in Possession of a Firearm

18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1)

DEMETRIUS FLOWERS, a/k/a “Mojo,”

 

10 years in prison

 

DEFENDANT

AGE

DEMETRIUS FLOWERS, a/k/a “Mojo,”

35

JOSEPH SMITH, a/k/a “Joe Lite,”

28

FRANK O’BRYANT, a/k/a “Frank White,”

29

ELADIO PADILLA, a/k/a “Nino,”

27

QUINZELL FRAZIER, a/k/a “Q Black,” a/k/a “Blizzy,”

23

JONATHAN SAEZ, a/k/a “John J,” a/k/a “J,”

30

BRIAN MCBETH, a/k/a “Smoove,”

24

FRANCISCO REYES, a/k/a “Bundlez,”

22

LUIS CRUZ, a/k/a “Manny,”

20

RALPHIE DEJESUS, a/k/a “Nuws,”

24

GABRIEL OCASIO, a/k/a “Fifty,”

28

RAHIM SOLANO, a/k/a “Rah,” a/k/a “Radio,”

24

MICHAEL MESTRE, a/k/a “Getty,” a/k/a “Wax,”

24

SAQURAN CURTIS, a/k/a “Esai,”

26

CHRISTOPHER NAPOLEONIS, a/k/a “Pudge,”

26

ROBERT WILSON, a/k/a “Rubar,” a/k/a “Lil Rubar,”

24

 

United States v. Damon Guadalupe, a/k/a “Pappy,” et al.

 

COUNT

CHARGE

DEFENDANTS

MAX. PENALTIES

1

Conspiracy to Distribute Narcotics

 

21 U.S.C. § 846

DAMON GUADALUPE, a/k/a “Pappy,”

 

MOHAMMED FABELO, a/k/a “Mo,”

 

WILLIAM RODRIGUEZ,

 

JASON HOOKS, a/k/a “Hamo,”

 

WILFREDO LABOY, a/k/a “Gutter,”

Life in prison with a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison

 

 

 

2

Possession of Firearms in Furtherance of Narcotics Trafficking

 

18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A)

DAMON GUADALUPE, a/k/a “Pappy,”

 

Life in prison with a mandatory minimum of 5 years in prison

 

 

 

DEFENDANT

AGE

DAMON GUADALUPE, a/k/a “Pappy,”

34

MOHAMMED FABELO, a/k/a “Mo,”

38

WILLIAM RODRIGUEZ,

54

JASON HOOKS, a/k/a “Hamo,”

31

WILFREDO LABOY, a/k/a “Gutter,”

30

 

[1] As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the text of the Indictments, and the description of the Indictments set forth herein, constitute only allegations, and every fact described should be treated as an allegation.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Press Release Number: 
16-118
Updated May 11, 2016