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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Jury Convicts Rochester Man Of Narcotics And Firearms Offenses In A Case Involving Two Murders

CONTACT:      Barbara Burns
PHONE:         (716) 843-5817
FAX:            (716) 551-3051 

ROCHESTER, N.Y.--U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Angelo Ocasio, 41, of Rochester, NY was convicted following a federal jury trial of conspiracy to possess and distribute five or more kilograms of cocaine, 280 or more grams of crack cocaine, one kilogram or more of heroin and a quantity marijuana and of possessing, carrying, using and discharging firearms during, in relation to and in furtherance of the narcotics conspiracy. The firearms charge related to the murder of Jose Troche in January 2010 and a shooting and murder at 137 Cameron Street in July 2009.
The charges carry a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison, a maximum of life and a $4,000,000 fine. 
According to Assistant U.S. Attorneys Everardo A. Rodriguez and Melissa M. Marangola, who handled the prosecution of the case, Ocasio was arrested along with seven other defendants related to a long-term and violent narcotics trafficking ring in the City of Rochester headed by James Kendrick and his brother Pablo "Paul" Plaza.
Four co-defendants have been convicted. Three other co-defendants, including James Kendrick, his brother Pablo Plaza and their mother, Janine Plaza-Pierce, are scheduled to go to trial on June 6, 2016. Their charges include narcotics and firearms related offenses, two murders and several additional shootings.  Francisco Santos was murdered in October 1998, his body was found in May 1999 buried on the Cattaraugus Indian Reservation in Erie County, NY. The second murder charged was that of their relative Ryan Cooper between May and July 1999.  Cooper’s body has never been found. The murder of Jose Troche on January 14, 2010 in Rochester will also be at issue in the case. 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.   
Co-defendant, Angelo Cruz, was sentenced to 25 years in prison today for participating in the drug conspiracy and in the murder of Francisco Santos. 
The conviction is the result of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Delano A. Reid, New York Field Division, and the Rochester Police Department, under the direction of Chief Michael Ciminelli. 
Sentencing of Angelo Ocasio is scheduled for September 7, 2016 at 2:30 p.m. before Chief U.S. District Judge Frank P. Geraci who presided over the prosecution of the case.

Updated May 13, 2016