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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 8, 2022

Honduran National Geovanny Fuentes Ramirez Sentenced To Life In Prison And Ordered To Forfeit $151.7 Million For Distributing Tons Of Cocaine And Related Firearms Offenses

Fuentes Ramirez Conspired with High-Ranking Honduran Politicians and Members of the Honduran Military and National Police to Operate a Cocaine Lab in Honduras and Distribute Cocaine Using Air and Maritime Routes

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today that GEOVANNY FUENTES RAMIREZ was sentenced today to life in prison for cocaine-importation and weapons offenses.  A jury convicted FUENTES RAMIREZ in March 2021 after a two-week trial.  The sentence was imposed by the Honorable P. Kevin Castel, who also presided over the trial.   

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “Geovanny Fuentes Ramirez was convicted of importing tons of cocaine into the United States and protecting his illicit drug business with machineguns. In committing his narcotics crimes, Fuentes Ramirez bribed high-ranking Honduran officials and was responsible for brutal acts of violence and murder. Fuentes Ramirez’s path of destruction, both in violence and flooding the United States with cocaine, has finally come to an end, and he will now spend his life in federal prison.”

As reflected in the Superseding Indictment, public filings, and the evidence presented at trial:

Beginning in or about 2009, FUENTES RAMIREZ and others established and operated a cocaine laboratory in the Cortés Department of Honduras, where they produced hundreds of kilograms of cocaine each month.  FUENTES RAMIREZ worked with others to receive cocaine shipments sent to Honduras over air and maritime routes, and to transport cocaine that he produced at the laboratory.  FUENTES RAMIREZ provided security for the facility, and for the transportation of cocaine, using heavily armed workers and Honduran police and military personnel.  On several occasions between approximately 2010 and 2013, FUENTES RAMIREZ helped arrange or directly participated in drug-related violence.  In or about 2012, for example, after FUENTES RAMIREZ’s cocaine laboratory was raided by law enforcement, FUENTES RAMIREZ beat and tortured a law enforcement official who FUENTES RAMIREZ believed to have been involved in the investigation of the laboratory.  FUENTES RAMIREZ murdered the officer by shooting him in the head with what FUENTES RAMIREZ described as “mercy shots.”  FUENTES RAMIREZ also furthered his drug trafficking operation by bribing high-ranking Honduran officials.  

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In addition to the prison term, FUENTES RAMIREZ, 52, was sentenced to five years of supervised release.

Mr. Williams praised the outstanding efforts of the DEA’s Special Operations Division Bilateral Investigations Unit, New York Strike Force, and Tegucigalpa Country Office, as well as the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs.

This prosecution is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation.  OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach.  Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

This case is being handled by the Office’s National Security and International Narcotics Unit.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael D. Lockard, Jacob H. Gutwillig, Jason A. Richman, and Elinor L. Tarlow are in charge of the prosecution.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Violent Crime
Contact: 
Nicholas Biase (212) 637-2600
Press Release Number: 
22-036
Updated February 8, 2022