Two Men Sentenced for Drug Conspiracy and Possession of a Firearm During a Drug Trafficking Offense
St. Thomas, USVI – On January 11, 2017, District Court Judge Curtis V. Gomez sentenced Alexandro Geraldino-Aracena, 39, of the Dominican Republic, to 202 months’ imprisonment for conspiracy and possession with intent to distribute cocaine, followed by five years of supervised release, United States Attorney Ronald W. Sharpe announced. Geraldino-Aracena was also sentenced to a consecutive 60-month term for possession of a firearm during a drug trafficking offense. Co-defendant Ricardo Cardona, 35, of Puerto Rico, was sentenced to 214 months’ imprisonment for conspiracy and possession with intent to distribute cocaine, followed by five years of supervised release. Cardona was also sentenced to a consecutive 60-month term for possession of a firearm during a drug trafficking offense. Judge Gomez also ordered Geraldino-Aracena and Cardona to each pay a $400 special assessment and perform 300 hours of community service.
According to evidence presented at trial, on the morning of September 3, 2015, Gerandino-Aracena and Cardona traveled in a private vessel equipped with a hidden compartment from Fajardo, Puerto Rico, to St. Thomas to purchase 150 kilograms of cocaine. They docked their vessel at the University of the Virgin Islands Marine Center Dock where they met other members of the drug trafficking organization to collect the cocaine in exchange for $250,000 and three assault rifles. Earlier that day in Puerto Rico, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents seized $1.4 million dollars in cash, which was partial payment for the cocaine.
This case was investigated by the DEA, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Sigrid M. Tejo-Sprotte and Delia Smith.