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Press Release

Fentanyl Trafficker Sentenced To 22 Years In Prison

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 that ISMAEL BIMBOW was sentenced to 22 years in prison today for his participation in a large-scale narcotics trafficking operation that sold kilogram quantities of fentanyl and heroin and for possessing firearms to protect the drug operation.  BIMBOW was convicted following a week-long jury trial in April 2022 before U.S. District Judge J. Paul Oetken, who imposed today’s sentence. 

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “The sentence today reaffirms this Office’s commitment to hold large-scale fentanyl traffickers accountable.  Armed fentanyl traffickers such as this defendant promote violence, ruin lives, and destroy communities.  This defendant sought to profit from trafficking significant quantities of this horrific drug, used multiple firearms to protect his operation, and profited handsomely, but he has now been justly punished for his crimes and will spend many years in federal prison.”

According to court documents and the evidence presented at the trial of BIMBOW:

BIMBOW and his co-conspirators ran a large-scale wholesale fentanyl operation out of numerous residences in New Jersey, while obtaining drug supplies and enlisting co-conspirators to “bag up” for him in the Southern District of New York.  BIMBOW also obtained and kept multiple loaded firearms to protect his drugs and drug supplies. 

On December 8, 2020, following a months-long investigation into his narcotics trafficking operation, BIMBOW was arrested outside of his stash house in East Orange, New Jersey.  Law enforcement agents then searched the vehicle that he was in and recovered a semi-automatic handgun, bundled U.S. currency, and several bundles of fentanyl hidden in the car’s secret compartment, a photograph of which is below:

Picture of a handgun, cash, and fentanyl hidden in the defendant’s car

Officers then searched BIMBOW’s stash house and multiple luxury apartments and residences and recovered large quantities of fentanyl and heroin — including over 50,000 individually packaged doses of fentanyl ready to be distributed into the community — as well as more bricks of fentanyl and equipment used to weigh, package, stamp, and sell fentanyl on the street.  Photographs of the over 50,000 doses of fentanyl recovered at the stash house are below:

Picture of fentanyl found in the defendant’s residences
Picture of fentanyl found in the defendant’s residences

During the search of BIMBOW’s three luxury apartments throughout northern New Jersey, agents located two additional firearms (including one with an extended magazine) and more fentanyl in one, a gold digital money counter in another, and over $450,000 in narcotics proceeds in the third.  A photograph on BIMBOW’s phone showed that same money counter surrounded by cash.  Photographs of the seized firearms, some of the seized cash, and the money counter from BIMBOW’s phone are below:  

Picture of a firearm found in the defendant’s residence
Picture of a firearm found in the defendant’s residence
Picture of a gold money counter and cash found in the defendant’s residence
Picture of cash found in the defendant’s residence

BIMBOW used his massive profits from fentanyl dealing to obtain numerous luxury vehicles, live in his multiple luxury apartments, invest in a club, and show off his earnings.  For example, evidence from BIMBOW’s phone showed him taking a video of hundreds of thousands of dollars in the very apartment in which it was seized in an apparent attempt to boast about his criminal proceeds, a screenshot of which is below:

Picture of cash found on the defendant’s phone

BIMBOW’s phone also contained photographs of at least four additional kilograms of fentanyl, two photos of which are shown below:  

Picture of a brick of fentanyl
Picture of a brick of fentanyl

Even after BIMBOW was arrested and detained, he continued to traffic fentanyl through the use of multiple contraband phones, which agents seized from his jail cell.  Evidence from those devices showed that BIMBOW continued his attempts to sell large quantities of dangerous fentanyl both before and even after he was convicted at trial in this matter.

*                *                *

ISMAEL BIMBOW, 46, of Newark, New Jersey, was convicted after trial of narcotics conspiracy and using and carrying firearms during and in relation to, or possessing firearms in furtherance of, the narcotics conspiracy.  In addition to the prison term, Judge Oetken sentenced BIMBOW to five years of supervised release.

Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative work of the Drug Enforcement Administration. 

The prosecution of this case is being handled by the Office’s Narcotics Unit.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael R. Herman, David J. Robles, and Frank J. Balsamello are in charge of the prosecution.


Nicholas Biase
(212) 637-2600

Updated December 14, 2023

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Press Release Number: 23-426