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Press Release

Bronx Man Sentenced To Life In Prison For The 2006 Murder Of Kelly Diaz And Other Crimes

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

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today that EDWIN CORTORREAL, a/k/a “Crazy Ed,” was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Valerie E. Caproni to life in prison for his participation in a violent robbery crew known as the “Hot Boys” and the murder of Kelly Diaz in 2006 in the Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan.  CORTORREAL was convicted following a five-day trial before Judge Caproni on April 26, 2023.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “Edwin Cortorreal was a member of a violent robbery crew that terrorized the Washington Heights neighborhood in Manhattan.  But simply robbing his victims was not enough for Cortorreal.  He was willing to kill them to make sure he got away with his crimes.  To that end, in 2006, Cortorreal executed Kelly Diaz in front of Diaz’s wife.  But thanks to the hard work of our law enforcement partners and the prosecutors of this Office, Cortorreal did not get away with this crime.”

According to the evidence presented in court during the trial:

From at least 2006 to in or about 2013, a violent robbery crew known as the “Hot Boys” committed countless burglaries and robberies and sold narcotics in the Washington Heights area.  EDWIN CORTORREAL was a trusted associate of the Hot Boys.  In 2006, CORTORREAL and four other members and associates of the Hot Boys broke into Kelly Diaz’s apartment in the middle of the night.  During the course of the robbery, CORTORREAL and his co-conspirators duct-taped Diaz to a chair and threw his wife to the ground.  As they were leaving, CORTORREAL came back and shot Diaz point-blank in the head, killing him instantly as his wife looked on.  Less than a year later, CORTORREAL planned to commit another armed robbery, during which he plotted to kill the victims to avoid leaving behind any witnesses. 

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CORTORREAL, 36, of the Dominican Republic, was found guilty of one count of conspiracy to commit racketeering, one count of murder in aid of racketeering, and one count of the use of firearm resulting in death.           

Mr. Williams thanked the New York Healthcare Fraud Unit of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the New York City Police Department (“NYPD”), and NYPD Task force officers assigned to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for their work on the investigation.

The case is being prosecuted by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mathew Andrews, David Denton, Courtney Heavey, Adam Hobson, Emily Johnson, Ni Qian, Justin Rodriguez, and Hagan Scotten are in charge of the prosecution, with the assistance of paralegal specialist Mia Vuckovich.


Nicholas Biase
(212) 637-2600

Updated September 20, 2023

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 23-330