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Press Release

Rockland County Man Indicted In White Plains Federal Court For Narcotics Trafficking

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

Joon H. Kim, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and James J. Hunt, Special Agent in Charge, New York Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration (“DEA”), today announced that an indictment was returned by a grand jury charging MATTHEW DRAPER, a/k/a “Mata,” a resident of Haverstraw, New York, with allegedly trafficking wholesale amounts of cocaine in and around Rockland County, New York. DRAPER was arrested on a criminal complaint on October 6, 2016, and has been in custody since that date.


According to the allegations contained in the Indictment and the Complaint[1] charging DRAPER:


DRAPER was part of a cocaine distribution conspiracy responsible for transporting wholesale amounts of cocaine from the Dominican Republic to the New York area on commercial airline flights. The conspiracy relied on contacts working in airports both in the Dominican Republic and in the United States to facilitate the deliveries. From in or around September 2016 through October 5, 2016, DRAPER worked with a confidential informant and a supplier in the Dominican Republic to facilitate the transport of approximately 20 kilograms of cocaine from the Dominican Republic to New York. DRAPER intended to have the confidential informant retrieve the cocaine from the airport and provide it to DRAPER at a predetermined location. On October 5, 2016, DEA agents learned from the confidential informant that the 20 kilograms of cocaine DRAPER purchased from the Dominican Republic had been secreted in luggage, and placed on an airplane scheduled to arrive at JFK Airport. DEA agents were able to locate the airplane and the luggage in question. DEA agents recovered approximately 20 kilograms of cocaine that had been wrapped and sealed in a clear vacuum-sealed bag. DRAPER was arrested that same day attempting to obtain the cocaine from the confidential informant at the predetermined location. Upon his arrest, law enforcement recovered approximately $23,000 in cash and what appeared to be an additional kilogram of cocaine from DRAPER’s vehicle. Law enforcement agents also executed a search warrant on DRAPER’s residence. During the search, agents recovered an additional half-kilogram of a substance that appeared to be cocaine.


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DRAPER, 49, of Haverstraw, New York, is charged with one count of conspiracy to distribute narcotics, which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison, and one count of possession of narcotics with intent to distribute, which also carries a maximum sentence of life in prison. The statutory maximum sentences are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the Court.


Mr. Kim praised the outstanding investigative work of the Drug Enforcement Administration. Mr. Kim also thanked the Rockland County Drug Task Force and the Town of Haverstraw Police Department Street Crime Unit for their cooperation and assistance in this investigation.


The prosecution is being handled by the Office’s White Plains Division. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jennifer Burns, Lauren Schorr, and Christopher J. Clore are in charge of the prosecution.


The charges contained in the Indictment and Complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.


[1] As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the texts of the Indictment and the Complaint, and the descriptions of the Indictment and the Complaint set forth herein, constitute only allegations, and every fact described should be treated as an allegation.

Updated April 12, 2017

Drug Trafficking
Press Release Number: 17-106