Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today that JONATHAN FELIZ, the former leader of the Manhattan branch of the “Trinitarios,” a violent street and prison gang , and LOUINSKY MINIER, who was also a member of the Trinitarios, were sentenced today for racketeering and firearms offenses. MINIER was also sentenced for the murder of a rival gang member, Roy Abreu, in November 2006. FELIZ was charged with 41 others in March 2009, and MINIER was charged in June 2010. FELIZ and MINIER were each sentenced today by U.S. District Judge George B. Daniels. FELIZ received a sentence of 30 years’ imprisonment. MINIER received a sentence of 220 months’ imprisonment, to be served after he completes a seven-year sentence he is currently serving on related New York state charges.
Manhattan United States Attorney Preet Bharara said: “For much of the past decade, the Trinitarios street gang strangled pockets of Upper Manhattan in its cold-blooded grip infesting neighborhoods with drugs and lethal violence. With today’s sentencings, Jonathan Feliz and Louinsky Minier will be off the streets for years to come, and other gang members should be on notice that we will continue working to end their brutal reigns and see that they are punished.”
According to the Indictment, the Informations, and other documents filed in the case, as well as statements made during the sentencing proceedings:
FELIZ was the leader of the Manhattan faction of the Trinitarios gang, and in that capacity, he ordered acts of violence to be committed by other gang members, acquired and stored guns, and managed a large-scale narcotics trafficking network in Washington Heights. The gang worked with other associates, collectively known as the “Washington Heights Marijuana Organization,” (the “WHMO”) to control drug trafficking – in particular, the trafficking of marijuana – on several blocks in the Washington Heights section of Manhattan. Members and associates of the WHMO operated a business that distributed and sold marijuana and other narcotics, and committed, conspired, attempted, and threatened to commit acts of violence, including murder, against rival traffickers, competitors, and individuals who stole narcotics proceeds from the enterprise. Members and associates of the WHMO conspired and attempted to kill at least two people in addition to Roy Abreu and, on November 23, 2006, MINIER shot Abreu to death. According to arguments made at sentencing, MINIER shot and killed Abreu, and shot another man, in connection with a dispute over $150,000 of drug proceeds that had been stolen from the WHMO. FELIZ and MINIER are half-brothers.
Mr. Bharara praised the work of the Drug Enforcement Administration, the New York City Police Department, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.
The case is being handled by the Office’s Violent Crimes Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Nola B. Heller and Michael D. Maimin are in charge of the prosecution.