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Press Release


For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Virgin Islands

St. Thomas, VI – United States Attorney Delia L. Smith announced today that Emanuel Campbell Camacho of Puerto Rico was sentenced to 87 months of imprisonment by Chief District Judge Robert A. Molloy on his conviction of possession with intent to distribute cocaine.

According to court documents, on September 22, 2020, Drug Enforcement Administration agents learned that Campbell Camacho and Carlos Rafael Velez-Lopez, both of Puerto Rico, had traveled by commercial flight from Puerto Rico to St. Thomas, and were driving a purple Jeep Wrangler. After two days of surveillance, agents observed Campbell Camacho leave the Windward Passage Hotel as the passenger of a blue Mazda sedan that traveled to a parking lot at Mandela Circle. Campbell Camacho exited his vehicle and leaned into the passenger side of another vehicle parked next to his vehicle. Moments later, Campbell Camacho removed a large duffle bag from the parked vehicle and place it inside his vehicle. Agents followed Campbell Camacho back to Windward Passage Hotel and observed him carrying the duffle bag up to the second floor level of the hotel. As they approached Campbell Camacho, agents also observed Velez-Lopez near the top of the stairs with a cell phone in his hands. Agents later discovered 30 bricks of cocaine in Campbell Camacho’s black duffle bag. A search of Velez-Lopez’s cell phones revealed that Campbell Camacho and Velez-Lopez were in constant contact while Camacho traveled to Mandela Circle to collect the cocaine. Velez-Lopez is scheduled for sentencing on July 7, 2023.

The Drug Enforcement Administration investigated this case and Assistant United States Attorney Kyle Payne prosecuted the case. This effort 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

Updated June 9, 2023

Drug Trafficking