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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Mexican Drug Trafficker Charged With Drug Trafficking Crime Based On Seizure Of Over 500 Kilograms Of Methamphetamine

Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Raymond P. Donovan, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Division of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (“DEA”), Peter C. Fitzhugh, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Office of Homeland Security Investigations (“HSI”), Keith M. Corlett, Superintendent of the New York State Police (“NYSP”), and Dermot Shea, Police Commissioner of the City of New York (“NYPD”), announced that ANGEL GUADALUPE RAMOS‑RAMIREZ was charged in a criminal complaint in Manhattan federal court with conspiring to import more than 500 kilograms of methamphetamine into the United States.  The charge arises from a February 8, 2020, seizure by Mexico’s Secretaría de Marina (the “Mexican Navy”) of more than 500 kilograms of methamphetamine off the coast of San Felipe, Mexico.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said:  “Angel Guadalupe Ramos-Ramirez is charged with conspiring to import more than half a ton of methamphetamine into the U.S.  Thanks to our partners in this case, those dangerous drugs have been seized before they got here, and Ramos-Ramirez is in custody.”

DEA Special Agent in Charge Raymond P. Donovan said:  “Five hundred kilograms of crystal methamphetamine is a significant seizure that will save lives and take over $12 million of drug proceeds out of traffickers’ hands.  Methamphetamine is a fierce animal on the loose throughout the nation and a major threat to public health, which is why DEA and our law enforcement partners will not relent pursing drug trafficking organizations until they are brought to justice.”  

HSI Special Agent in Charge Peter C. Fitzhugh said:  “This case prevented large amounts of methamphetamine, a highly addictive and dangerous narcotic, from harming the public, regardless of where they happen to live.  Investigations like these are a great example of what can be accomplished with incredible cooperation among multiple agencies, and HSI is committed to collaboration in order to keep these deadly drugs out of our communities.”

State Police Superintendent Keith M. Corlett said:  “This investigation has prevented a large amount of dangerous drugs from reaching our shores, where they would have damaged lives and communities.  Our strong law enforcement partnerships are responsible for the success of this case, and I commend all the members and agencies involved for their outstanding work.”

Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said:  “This was a significant operation to interdict the kind of illegal drugs that cause so much harm on our streets.  I want to thank our detectives and law enforcement partners, here and abroad, for working together against this common threat.”

As alleged in the Complaint unsealed in federal court[1]:

On or about February 7, 2020, the Mexican Navy began tracking a boat traveling northwest through the Gulf of California from Sinaloa, Mexico toward Baja California, Mexico.  On February 8, 2020, the Mexican Navy interdicted the vessel off the coast of San Felipe, Mexico, in Baja California, and arrested RAMOS-RAMIREZ.  Mexican Navy officers seized approximately 26 plastic packages, each of which contained approximately 20 kilograms of methamphetamine, from the water around the boat.  In total, the Mexican Navy recovered more than 500 kilograms of methamphetamine from the water.

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RAMOS-RAMIREZ, 33, of Mexico, is charged with conspiring to import methamphetamine into the United States, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum sentence of life in prison.

Mr. Berman praised the outstanding investigative work of the DEA.

The investigation was conducted by the New York Strike Force in partnership with the DEA Mazatlan Resident Office and law enforcement partners.  The New York Strike Force is a crime-fighting unit comprising federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies supported by the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force and the New York/New Jersey High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area.  The Strike Force is based at the DEA’s New York Division and includes agents and officers of the DEA, New York City Police Department, New York State Police, Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Secret Service, U.S. Marshals Service, New York National Guard, Clarkstown Police Department, U.S. Coast Guard, Port Washington Police Department and New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision.

The case is being handled by the Office’s Terrorism and International Narcotics Unit.  Assistant United States Attorneys Michael K. Krouse, Stephanie Lake, Daniel G. Nessim, Benjamin Woodside Schrier, and Kyle A. Wirshba are in charge of the prosecution.

The charge contained in the Complaint is merely an allegation, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

 

[1] As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the text of the Complaint, and the description of the Complaint and statements and filings in court set forth herein, constitute only allegations, and every fact described herein should be treated as an allegation as to the defendant charged in the Complaint.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Contact: 
Jim Margolin, Nicholas Biase (212) 637-2600
Press Release Number: 
20-051
Updated February 11, 2020