Atlantic County Man Admits Role in Drug Distribution Scheme
CAMDEN, N.J. – Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Jersey Division Susan A. Gibson and U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey Philip R. Sellinger announced an Atlantic County man today admitted his role in a heroin distribution scheme.
Christopher Gonzalez, 38, of Egg Harbor Township, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Renée Marie Bumb to an information charging him with conspiring to distribute over one kilogram of heroin and possession with intent to distribute over one kilogram of heroin.
On July 12, 2021, a search warrant was executed at co-defendant Ricardo Clavijo’s residence, where law enforcement authorities encountered Clavijo and Christopher Gonzalez, Clavijo’s brother. Authorities found 4.3 kilograms of heroin, 5.5 kilograms of fentanyl, 10.8 kilograms of cocaine, drug packaging materials and equipment, and a money counting machine. Some of the heroin was already packaged in tens of thousands of individual doses, ready for street-level distribution.
The counts to which Gonzalez pleaded guilty both carry a mandatory minimum term of 10 years in prison, a maximum term of life in prison, and a maximum fine of $10 million, or twice the gross gain or loss caused by the offense. Sentencing is scheduled for Feb. 9, 2023.
Ricardo Clavijo has already pleaded guilty for his role in the conspiracy.
U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Newark Division, DEA Atlantic County HIDTA Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Susan A. Gibson, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea. He also thanked the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office and the Egg Harbor Township Police Department for their assistance.