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Press Release

Leader Of New Rochelle Drug Trafficking Organization Sentenced To More Than 7 Years In Prison For Distributing Cocaine

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

Audrey Strauss, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that ULYSSES LOPEZ was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Nelson S. Román to 87 months in prison for leading a drug trafficking conspiracy that distributed kilograms of cocaine out of a grocery store located in New Rochelle, New York.  LOPEZ pled guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge Judith C. McCarthy on August 27, 2020. 

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss said: “Today’s sentence sends a message that destructive drug trafficking in our communities will not be tolerated.  We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to keep our neighborhoods free of addictive and dangerous narcotics.”

According to the allegations in the Indictment, and statements made in court filings and during court proceedings:

From April 2018 up to October 2018, ULYSSES LOPEZ, together with six charged co-defendants, conspired to distribute five kilograms and more of powder cocaine.  LOPEZ was the leader and organizer of the drug trafficking conspiracy, which operated out of several buildings in the vicinity of, and including, the SuperMercado Mexico located in New Rochelle, New York, which was owned and operated by LOPEZ and his father and co-defendant, Valentino Lopez (“Valentino”). 

After being arrested, and while detained at the Westchester County Jail, LOPEZ attempted to obstruct justice by encouraging one of his charged codefendants, Felipe Barajas, to provide false statements to the Government regarding their relationships and Barajas’s use of his residence to store cocaine on LOPEZ’s behalf.  

Six of the charged defendants, including LOPEZ, Valentino, and Barajas, have pled guilty and been sentenced.  Valentino was sentenced on June 25, 2021, to 60 months in prison for his role in the drug trafficking conspiracy.  The seventh defendant remains a fugitive. 

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In addition to his prison sentence, LOPEZ, 41, of New Rochelle, New York, was sentenced to four years of supervised release, and forfeiture of $150,000 and a Mercedes Benz ML350.

Ms. Strauss praised the excellent work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

This case is being handled by the Office’s White Plains Division.  Assistant United States Attorneys Emily Deininger, David Felton, and Celia Cohen are in charge of the prosecution.


James Margolin, Nicholas Biase
(212) 637-2600

Updated July 28, 2021

Drug Trafficking
Press Release Number: 21-195