Eight Violent Drug Traffickers Charged With Six Murders And Multiple Trafficking, Firearms And Racketeering Offenses
MAY 02 - MIAMI, Fla. - Eight members and associates of La Organizacion de Narcotraficantes (La ONU) were named today in an unsealed indictment charging them with six murders and multiple counts of racketeering, drug trafficking, and firearms offenses.
Adolphus P. Wright, the Special Agent in Charge of the Miami Field Division of the DEA, James J. Hunt, the Special Agent in Charge of the New York Field Division of the Drug Enforcement (DEA), Matthew Donahue, the Special Agent in Charge, Caribbean Division of the DEA, Joon H. Kim, the Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Philip R. Bartlett, Inspector in Charge of the New York Office of the U.S. Postal Inspection (USPIS), Peter Forcelli, Special Agent in Charge of the Miami Field Division and the Puerto Rico Field Office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and (ATF), Angel M. Melendez, the Special Agent-in-Charge of the New York Field Office of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security (HSI), James P. O’Neill, the Commissioner of the New York City Police (NYPD), and George P. Beach II, the Superintendent of the New York State (NYSP) today jointly announced the unsealing of the indictment.
All eight defendants are charged with murder. In connection with the racketeering conspiracy and a narcotics conspiracy, members and associates of La ONU are charged in the indictment with committing the following murders in Puerto Rico:
- The April 9, 2005, murder of Crystal Martinez-Ramirez.
- The June 23, 2006, double murder of Ken Gonzalez-Rodriguez and Jean Adorno-Caballero.
- The December 28, 2006, murder of Israel Crespo-Cotto.
- The May 9, 2007, murder of Anthony Castro-Carrillo.
- The March 20, 2009, murder of Carlos Barbosa.
La ONU was a criminal enterprise involved in the trafficking of cocaine from Puerto Rico to the Bronx, New York according to allegations in the indictment unsealed today in Manhattan federal court and in other court papers. The cocaine was distributed in New York, including out of a daycare center in the Bronx. Members and associates of La ONU engaged in acts of violence, including murder, to protect and expand the enterprise’s criminal operations and in connection with rivalries with other criminal organizations. In particular, members of the enterprise shot and killed suspected rival drug trafficking members.
Five of the defendants --Julio Marquez Alejandro, aka “Chino Montero,” Luis Blondet, aka “Cabezon,” Jason Dones-Gonzalez, aka “Jason,” aka “Arrabal,” Jose Victor Pellot Cardona, aka “Vitito,” and Reinaldo Cruz-Fernandez are already in custody for other offenses. The remaining three defendants - Oscar Valdes-Garcia, aka “Pony,” William Vasquez-Baez, and Ralph Laboy - will be presented today in the District of Puerto Rico before U.S. Magistrate Judge Silvia Carreno-Coll. Vasquez-Baez was an active member of the Puerto Rico Police Department when he allegedly committed the May 9, 2007, murder of Anthony Castro-Carrillo, as charged in Counts 13 and 14 of the indictment. Laboy had recently resigned from the Puerto Rico Police Department when he allegedly committed the Castro-Carillo murder. That case has been assigned to United States District Judge Jesse M. Furman in Manhattan.
“Through this collaborative effort with our law enforcement partners, drug traffickers committing not only drug violations, but also other equally egregious and violent crimes, have been taken off the streets,” Wright said. “We remain committed to pursuing their prosecution to the fullest extent of the law.”
“A 2013 investigation grew legs into something much more dangerous than a local drug distribution organization operating out of a daycare center in the Bronx,” Hunt said. “It led investigators to identifying the organization’s alleged source of supply comprising corrupt cops and violent thugs who were arrested today in Puerto Rico. This is a great example of cooperative law enforcement efforts.”
“The culmination of this investigation sends a strong message to criminal networks, that the law enforcement community will vigorously pursue those responsible for these crimes, and bring them to justice, and when a fellow law enforcement officer is identified as a co-conspirator, he will be pursued and brought to justice as with any other co-conspirator,” said Donahue.
“Members and associates of a violent drug trafficking organization, La ONU, allegedly committed six ruthless murders to further a drug trade that funneled massive quantities of cocaine from Puerto Rico to New York,” Kim said. “Frighteningly, one of those six murders allegedly was committed by an active and a former member of the Puerto Rico Police Department. As alleged, when police officers, sworn to protect the citizens they serve, instead kill to protect drug trafficking profits, that tears at the very fabric of civilized society. Such alleged lawlessness simply cannot be left unchecked. We thank all of our federal and local law enforcement partners for their tireless investigative work to bring these defendants to justice in a court of law.”
“This criminal enterprise stopped at nothing to allegedly move drugs from Puerto Rico to the Bronx; it was all about money,” Bartlett said . “They didn’t care who or what got in their way, and based on the indictment, they ‘got rid’ of their perceived obstacles. Fortunately, members of this criminal enterprise underestimated the power of interagency cooperation and collaboration. These individuals will be brought to justice for their alleged heinous crimes against the community and the misuse of the US Mail to facilitate the transport of illegal drugs into the United States.”
“For years, ATF has made combatting violent crime its top priority and this case is a perfect example of our commitment to making our communities safer,” Forcelli said. “We will work tirelessly with our state, local, and federal partners to identify, investigate, and prosecute those who use or traffic in illegal firearms, regardless of where they engage in criminal activity. This case is a clear example of interagency teamwork and collaboration across several jurisdictions and I’m proud of the work that was done here.”
“This investigation is yet another example of law enforcement partners working collaboratively to get dangerous individuals and drugs off our streets,” said Beach. “The expertise and dedication of our law enforcement colleagues charged eight individuals in multiple murders in Puerto Rico. Two of the individuals were police officers, trusted with enforcing the law, and were instead breaking it and causing terror in communities. I thank all of our law enforcement partners for their hard work, professionalism and commitment to making our neighborhoods safer.”
Count One of the indictment charges Julio Marquez Alejandro, aka “Chino Montero,” Luis Blondet, aka “Cabezon,” Oscar Valdes-Garcia, aka “Pony,” Jason Dones-Gonzalez, aka “Jason,” aka “Arrabal,” Jose Victor Pellot Cardona, aka “Vitito,” and Reinaldo Cruz-Fernandez with participating in a racketeering conspiracy for criminal involvement in La ONU.
Counts Two and Three of the indictment charge Luis Blondet with the murder of Crystal Martinez-Ramirez in aid of racketeering, and a related firearms offense.
Counts Four, Five, and Six of the indictment charge Julio Marquez Alejandro and Oscar Valdes-Garcia with the murder of Jean Adorno-Caballero in aid of racketeering and in connection with a drug crime, as well as a related firearms offense.
Counts Seven, Eight, and Nine of the indictment charge Julio Marquez Alejandro and Oscar Valdes-Garcia with the murder of Ken Gonzalez-Rodriguez in aid of racketeering and in connection with a drug crime, as well as a related firearms offense.
Counts 10, 11, and 12 of the indictment charge Julio Marquez Alejandro and Oscar Valdes-Garcia with the murder of Israel Crespo-Cotto in aid of racketeering and in connection with a drug crime, as well as a related firearms offense.
Counts 13 and 14 of the indictment charge Ralph Laboy and William Vasquez-Baez with the murder of Anthony Castro-Carrillo in connection with a drug crime, as well as a related firearms offense.
Counts 15, 16, and 17 of the indictment charge Julio Marquez-Alejandro, Jason Dones-Gonzalez, Jose Victor Pellot-Cardona and Reinaldo Cruz-Fernandez with the murder of Carlos Barbosa in aid of racketeering and in connection with a drug crime, as well as a related firearms offense.
Mr. Kim praised the outstanding investigative work of the DEA, DEA’s New York Strike Force, the USPIS,the ATF, and the NYPD. He also thanked the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Puerto Rico, U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, the Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor for the City of New York, and the Puerto Rico Police Department for their support in this ongoing investigation. The DEA New York Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Strike Force comprises agents and officers of the DEA, the New York City Police Department, Immigration and Customs Enforcement - Homeland Security (HSI), the New York State Police, the U. S. Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and (ATF), the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Secret Service, the U.S. Marshals Service, New York National Guard, the Clarkstown Police Department, U.S. Coast Guard, Port Washington Police Department and New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision. The Strike Force is partially funded by the New York/New Jersey High Intensity Drug Trafficking (HIDTA), which is a federally funded crime fighting initiative.
This case is being handled by the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York’s Narcotics Unit. Assistant United States Attorneys Jordan Estes, Dina McLeod, Andrew Thomas, and Lara Pomerantz are in charge of the prosecution.
Charts containing the names, ages, charges, and maximum penalties for the defendants are set forth below. The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendants will be determined by the judge.
The charges contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.