Eight Loiza Boys Gang Members Plead Guilty To Drug Charges
CONTACT: Barbara Burns
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BUFFALO, N.Y. – Acting U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Oneil Quinones, 31, Jorge Quinones, 39, Edwin Sanchez, 31, Angel Sanchez, 49, Raul Ramirez Vargas, 43, and Miguel Manso, 46, all of Buffalo, NY, and Jose Rivera, 35, of Niagara Falls, NY, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute heroin before Senior U.S. District Judge William M. Skretny. The charge carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum of life, and $10,000,000 fine. In addition, Ellis Colon, 32, of Buffalo, pleaded guilty to misprision of a felony and faces up to three years in prison.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas S. Duszkiewicz, who is handling the case, stated that the defendants were members of a gang known as the Loiza Boys which has been distributing heroin and cocaine on Buffalo’s West Side since at least 2006.
The defendants were charged in 2013 along with co-conspirators Oscar Romero and Josbel Garcia following a long term investigation that involved the interception of telephone calls of the defendants and the use of undercover drug purchases from some of those charged. During the investigation, law enforcement officers seized over 450 grams of heroin, three firearms, and over $70,000 in U.S. currency.
Oscar Romero has also been convicted and is scheduled to be sentenced on March 15, 2017. Josbel Garcia is scheduled to go to trial on January 3, 2017. The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
The pleas are the culmination of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation Safe Streets Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Adam S. Cohen.
The defendants are scheduled to be sentenced in March and April of 2017, all before Judge Skretny.