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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Bronx Man Sentenced To More Than 13 Years In Prison For Firearms And Narcotics Trafficking

Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that ALEXIS VALDEZ, a/k/a “Lil Rico,” was sentenced today to 160 months in prison for firearms and narcotics trafficking.  VALDEZ and his co-conspirators sold seven guns, including an AK-47 assault rifle and a SKS assault rifle, a silencer, ammunition, and a bulletproof vest to undercover officers.  VALDEZ pled guilty in Manhattan federal court in April 2018 to one count of conspiring to distribute heroin and crack cocaine and one count of unlicensed firearms dealing.  U.S. District Judge Kimba M. Wood imposed today’s sentence.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said:  “Alexis Valdez sought to put illegal guns and drugs on the streets of New York City.  For his crimes, he will serve more than 13 years in prison.  We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to investigate and prosecute those who would put the people of our city in danger.”

According to the allegations contained in the Indictment and statements made in related court filings and proceedings:

From 2016 to August 2017, VALDEZ and other members of a drug trafficking organization (“DTO”) sold narcotics near Hughes Avenue and East Tremont Avenue in the Bronx, New York (the “Hughes Avenue DTO”).  VALDEZ personally sold crack cocaine to undercover officers on several occasions.  Members of the Hughes Avenue DTO, including VALDEZ, are also members and associates of the “Rolling 30s” neighborhood set of the nationwide Crips street gang.    

From October 2016 to May 2017, VALDEZ and two other men, who were both members of the Hughes Avenue DTO, sold firearms to undercover officers.  Over the course of six sales, undercover officers purchased seven firearms, including an AK-47 assault rifle, a SKS assault rifle, a shotgun, and several handguns, including one firearm with a defaced serial number.  VALDEZ and his co-conspirators also sold a silencer for a gun, ammunition, and a bulletproof vest to the undercover officers. 

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In addition to the prison term, VALDEZ, 26, of the Bronx, New York, was sentenced to four years of supervised release.  All nine members of the Hughes Avenue DTO charged in this case have pled guilty. 

Mr. Berman praised the work of the New York City Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration in this investigation. 

The case is being handled by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit.  Assistant United States Attorneys Drew Skinner and Anden Chow are in charge of the prosecution.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Press Release Number: 
19-125
Updated April 17, 2019