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Press Release

Alleged Drug Dealer Charged With Overdose Death In Manhattan

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of New York

Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, James J. Hunt, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration (“DEA”), and James P. O’Neill, the Commissioner of the New York City Police Department (“NYPD”), announced today the arrest of MICHAEL JONES and the unsealing of an Indictment charging him with distributing the heroin and fentanyl that resulted in the death of Diana Haikova in Manhattan on December 7, 2017.  The Indictment also alleges that JONES distributed heroin in Manhattan on February 14, 2018.  JONES was arrested this morning in Miami, Florida, by the DEA and NYPD, and will be presented tomorrow in federal court in Miami. 

U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said:  “As alleged, the heroin and fentanyl Michael Jones distributed resulted in the tragic overdose of 29-year-old Diana Haikova.  Even more abhorrent, Jones allegedly continued to sell the same drugs that contributed to Haikova’s death.  Working with the NYPD and DEA, we will continue to target and charge drug dealers that profit from the lethal opioid epidemic that is killing so many people.”

DEA Special Agent-in-Charge James J. Hunt said: “This investigation led us into the underbelly of emo rap and its glorification of opioid use.  Today, a team of DEA agents and NYPD Detectives arrested Michael Jones, known as the ‘realnewjerzeydevil’ for allegedly distributing a fatal dose of fentanyl mixed with heroin.  Behind every lethal overdose is a victim whose death becomes a catalyst for raising awareness of the dangers of opioid misuse.  The DEA extends condolences to the victim’s family and reemphasizes our commitment to bringing drug dealers to justice to face the consequences of their crimes.” 

According to the allegations in the Indictment and statements made during court proceedings in this matter [1]:

On December 7, 2017, Diana Haikova was found dead in her apartment in Manhattan, New York.  Following an investigation by the NYPD and DEA, law enforcement agents identified JONES as the person who distributed heroin and fentanyl to Haikova on December 5, 2017, that resulted in her death.

As further alleged in the Indictment, JONES continued to distribute narcotics in Manhattan after Haikova’s death, and distributed heroin on February 14, 2018.

*                *                *

JONES, 24, of Camden, New Jersey, was charged with distribution and possession with intent to distribute heroin and fentanyl, and with distribution and possession with intent to distribute heroin.  JONES faces a maximum sentence of life in prison and a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years in prison based upon his alleged distribution of the heroin and fentanyl that resulted in Ms. Haikova’s death.

The statutory maximum and minimum sentences are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for information purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant would be determined by the judge.

Mr. Berman praised the outstanding investigative work of the NYPD and DEA in this case.  Assistance was provided by the DEA’s Miami Field Division and the DEA Tactical Diversion Squad-NY, comprising agents from the DEA, the NYPD, the New York State Police, New York State Department of Financial Services, and New York City Department of Investigation. 

This case is being handled by the Office’s Narcotics Unit.  Assistant United States Attorney Thane Rehn is in charge of the prosecution.

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


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

Updated October 3, 2018

Press Release Number: 18-337