GRAND JURY INDICTS 42 FOLLOWING RACKETEERING AND DRUG DISTRIBUTION by fsd65350

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									                 NEWS RELEASE
                                   Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office
                                   71 Monument Park
                                   Freehold, New Jersey 07728
                                   732/ 431-7160
                                   Luis A. Valentin, Prosecutor




  GRAND JURY INDICTS 42 FOLLOWING RACKETEERING
      AND DRUG DISTRIBUTION INVESTIGATION

                            NETWORK DISMANTLED




       Monmouth County Prosecutor Luis A. Valentin and United States Drug
Enforcement Administration ("D.E.A."), New Jersey Division, Special Agent-in-Charge
Gerard P. McAleer announce that on July 16, 2008, a Monmouth County Grand Jury
returned five separate indictments against a total of 42 individuals following a lengthy
investigation into a Racketeering Conspiracy.

        The investigation was initiated in the Summer of 2006. It revealed that the
Racketeering Conspiracy was responsible for the transportation and distribution of large
quantities of cocaine and heroin throughout parts of New York and New Jersey. The
investigation culminated with a series of arrests in the Fall of 2007 in New York and New
Jersey.

       The investigation, which was dubbed "Operation Honeycomb,” was conducted by
the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office and the federal D.E.A. in conjunction with the
New Jersey State Police, the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office, and the Long Branch,
Asbury Park and Neptune City police departments. (For more details concerning the
investigation, please see the News Release previously issued by the Monmouth County
Prosecutor’s Office on November 1, 2007, available on the Monmouth County Prosecutor's
Office’s website, “http://www.prosecutor.co.monmouth.nj.us/”.)

       Four of the indictments charge the defendants named therein with a variety of
crimes, including, but not limited to, first degree Racketeering Conspiracy, second and
third degree Conspiracy, and first and second degree Distribution and Possession of
Controlled Dangerous Substances with Intent to Distribute. Some of the defendants are
also charged with second and third degree Endangering the Welfare of a Child, and with
Weapons offenses.
       A number of the defendants who are named in the four narcotics-related
indictments were arrested during, and as a result of, the investigation into the Racketeering
Conspiracy. As a result of those arrests, those defendants face additional charges.

       The fifth indictment charges the lone defendant named therein with second degree
Official Misconduct and with fourth degree Obstructing the Administration of Law.

       Copies of the Indictments are attached to this News Release.


                              INDICTMENT NUMBER 08-07-1605

       Indictment number 08-07-1605 charges each of the following individuals with first
degree Racketeering Conspiracy:

       1) Jose Concepcion, a/k/a "Balon,” age 29, of Long Branch, N.J., who is represented
       by Edward C. Bertucio, Jr., Esquire, of Eatontown, N.J.;
       2) Alejandro Burgos, a/k/a/ "Alex,” age 28, of Long Branch, N.J., who is represented
       by Jackeline Biddle, Esquire, of Long Branch, N.J.;
       3) Tyson Abel, a/k/a "I-Nat,” age 32, of Neptune City, N.J.; no attorney has entered
       an appearance with the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office yet;
       4) Katherine Russo, a/k/a "Katie,” age 25, of Rumson, N.J., who is represented by
       Kelly Anderson Smith, Esquire, of Millstone Township, N.J.;
       5) Ricardo Padro, a/k/a "Richie,” age 31, of West Long Branch, N.J., who is
       represented by Randolph Wolf, Esquire, of Red Bank, N.J.;
       6) Daniel Burgado, age 23, of Long Branch, N.J., who is represented by Jamie
       Herkins, Esquire, of the Oakhurst section of Ocean Township, N.J.;
       7) Jamie Albrizio, age 32, of West Long Branch, N.J., who is represented by Greg
       Gargulinski, Esquire, of Ocean Township, N.J.;
       8) Ramon Rodriguez, a/k/a/ "Pichy,” age 35, of Long Branch, N.J., who is
       represented by Russell Heckler, Esquire, of Atlantic Highlands, N.J.;
       9) Michael Smith, a/k/a "MAS,” a/k/a "Supreme,” age 33, of Neptune Township,
       N.J., who is represented by Sarah Surgent, Esquire, of Freehold, N.J.;
       10) Gilbert Lopez, a/k/a "Gilly Gil,” age 31, of Matawan, N.J.; no attorney has
       entered an appearance with the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office yet.

        The indictment alleges that the purposes of the Racketeering Conspiracy included:
distributing controlled dangerous substances to earn money; organizing and directing
subordinate members in the distribution and transportation of controlled dangerous
substances; and organizing and directing subordinate members to provide funding to post
bail for members of the enterprise who were arrested.

      The indictment charges those same defendants, together with two additional
defendants, with second degree Conspiracy. The two additional defendants are:

       11) Christine Strauss, age 40, of Long Branch, N.J., who is represented by Thomas
       Martin, Esquire, of Freehold, N.J.;
       12) Barbara Miller, age 32, of Neptune Township, N.J., who is represented by John
       Jay Perrone, Esquire, of Red Bank, N.J.
       The indictment alleges that these defendants conspired with each other and others,
and that the object of the criminal conspiracy was the distribution of more than 5 ounces of
cocaine.

      The indictment additionally charges Concepcion with the first degree crime of
Leader of a Narcotic Distribution Network. It alleges that he was involved in the network
as an organizer, supervisor, financier or manager. The investigation revealed that
Concepcion was involved in the Monmouth County arm of this narcotics distribution
enterprise.

       The indictment also alleges that Padro, at times with the assistance of Burgado
and/or Strauss, made multiple sales of cocaine to an undercover Detective between October
4, 2006 and November 9, 2006. The indictment alleges that some of these sales involved
more then one-half ounce of cocaine, and that the aggregate quantity of cocaine sold by
Padro was more than 5 ounces.

       Smith and Miller were arrested on August 5, 2007, at which time they were found to
be in possession of additional narcotics. As a result, the indictment also charges them with
having committed the crimes of third degree Possession of Cocaine, first degree Possession
of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute, and third degree Possession of Cocaine with Intent to
Distribute within 1000 feet of School Property on that date. Both are also charged with
Endangering the Welfare of a Child because two children belonging to Miller were present
in the residence which was shared by Smith and Miller from which some cocaine was
recovered.

       The indictment alleges that on August 10, 2007, Abel committed the crimes of third
degree Possession of Cocaine, first degree Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute,
and fourth degree Resisting Arrest.

       Padro was arrested on September 28, 2007, at which time he was found to be in
possession of additional narcotics. As a result, the indictment also charges him with having
committed the crimes of third degree Possession of Cocaine, second degree Possession of
Cocaine with Intent to Distribute, second degree Possession of a Firearm in the Course of
Committing a Drug Offense, and second degree Certain Persons not to Possess a Firearm
on that date.

       Albrizio was arrested on September 28, 2007. The indictment further alleges that
she committed the crimes of third degree Possession of Methylenedioxymethamphetamine
(commonly referred to as “Ecstasy”), third degree Possession of Cocaine, second degree
Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute, and second degree Endangering the
Welfare of a Child on that date. When Detectives attempted to arrest her on that date,
Albrizio briefly locked herself in a bedroom with a child and more than one-half ounce of
cocaine.

       At the time of his arrest on September 28, 2007, Burgos was found in possession of
additional contraband. The indictment additionally charges him with having committed
the crimes of third degree Possession of Cocaine, first degree Possession of Cocaine with
Intent to Distribute, 2 counts of second degree Possession of a Firearm in the Course of
Committing a Drug Offense, fourth degree Possession of Hollow Point Bullets, and second
degree Certain Persons not to Possess a Firearm on that date.
        The indictment further charges Abel and Russo with having committed the crimes
of third degree Possession of Heroin, second degree Possession of Heroin with Intent to
Distribute, second degree Possession of a Firearm in the Course of Committing a Drug
Offense, and fourth degree Possession of Hollow Point Bullets on September 28, 2007. Abel
is also charged with second degree Certain Persons not to Possess a Firearm.

      Finally, the indictment alleges that from May 31, 2007 and September 29, 2007,
Concepcion, Burgos, Abel, Russo, Padro, Rodriguez and Smith distributed more than 5
ounces of cocaine to various individuals in and around Monmouth County.


                             INDICTMENT NUMBER 08-07-1606

       Indictment number 08-07-1606 charges each of the following individuals with first
degree Racketeering Conspiracy:

      1) Edward Santana, a/k/a "Gigi,” a/k/a "Calvo,” age 31, formerly of Perth Amboy,
      N.J.; no attorney has entered an appearance with the Monmouth County
      Prosecutor’s Office yet;
      2) Luis Negron, a/k/a/ "Wichy,” age 34, of Carteret, N.J., who is represented by
      Robert DeGroot, Esquire, of Newark, N.J.;
      3) Nicholas Brito, a/k/a "Nico,” age 33, of the Bronx, N.Y.; no attorney has entered
      an appearance with the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office yet;
      4) William Duran Paulino, a/k/a "Henry Paulino Delsario,” age 27, of the Bronx,
      N.Y., who is represented by John D. Caruso, Esquire, of Newark, N.J.;
      5) Martha Rosario Chispe, age 38, of Panorama City, CA, who is represented by
      Barry Shapiro, Esquire, of Freehold, N.J.;
      6) Francisco Morales Chispe, age 36, of Los Angeles, CA, who is represented by
      Frank Howley, Esquire, of Howell Township, N.J.;
      7) Stephanie Machuado, age 26, of North Hollywood, CA, who is represented by
      Gerard DelTufo, Esquire, of Matawan, N.J.;
      8) Hector Carabali Cevallos, age 36, of the Republic of Ecuador, who is represented
      by Raymond Santiago, Esquire, of Freehold, N.J.

       The indictment alleges that the purposes of the Racketeering Conspiracy included:
distributing controlled dangerous substances to earn money; organizing and directing
subordinate members in the distribution and transportation of controlled dangerous
substances; and organizing and directing subordinate members to collect money which was
owed for controlled dangerous substances that has been "fronted" (provided on
consignment).

      The indictment charges those same defendants, together with four additional
defendants, with second degree Conspiracy. The four additional defendants are:

      9) Angel Aviles, age 35, of Newark, N.J., who is represented by John J. Flynn,
      Esquire, of Manasquan, N.J.;
      10) Luis Maldonado, age 43, of Newark, N.J., who is represented by Michael
      Wilbert, Esquire, of Manasquan, N.J.;
      11) Luz Torres, a/k/a "Lucie,” age 46, of Roselle, N.J., who is represented by Joseph
      A. Ferrante, Esquire, of Newark, N.J.;
      12) Juan Taveras, a/k/a "Gordo,” age 39, of New York, N.Y., who is represented by
      Craig Weis, Esquire, of Closter, N.J.
       The indictment alleges that these defendants conspired with each other and others,
and that the object of the criminal conspiracy was the distribution of more than 5 ounces of
cocaine.

       The indictment additionally charges Negron with the first degree crime of Leader of
a Narcotic Distribution Network. It alleges that he was involved in the network as an
organizer, supervisor, financier or manager. The investigation revealed that Negron was
involved in the North Jersey arm of this narcotics distribution enterprise.

       Negron, Maldonado, Aviles and Torres are also charged with having committed the
first degree crime of Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance with Intent to
Distribute on September 25, 2007. During the investigation, Detectives observed Negron
distribute approximately one kilogram of cocaine to Maldonado. The Detectives also
observed Maldonado distribute approximately one kilogram of cocaine to Aviles.
Consequently, the indictment charges Negron and Maldonado each with first degree
Distribution of Cocaine. A kilogram is equivalent to approximately 2.2 pounds.

       The indictment also charges Martha Rosario Chispe, Machuado and Cevallos with
having committed the crimes of third degree Possession of Cocaine, first degree Possession
of a Cocaine with Intent to Distribute, third degree Possession of Heroin, first degree
Possession of Heroin with Intent to Distribute, and Endangering the Welfare of a Child on
October 26, 2007. The investigation revealed that on that date they were in possession of
approximately 15 pounds of cocaine and approximately 6 ½ pounds of heroin as they were
traveling on the New Jersey Turnpike in a vehicle which had been rented in Florida. A
child approximately 2 years of age was in a car seat in the vehicle.


                              INDICTMENT NUMBER 08-07-1607

      Indictment number 08-07-1607 charges each of the following individuals with
second degree Conspiracy:

       1) Kojo Sloan, age 34, of Asbury Park, N.J., who is represented by John E. Sheehy,
       Esquire, of Toms River, N.J.;
       2) Antonio Castro, a/k/a/ "Tone,” age 24, of Long Branch, N.J.; no attorney has
       entered an appearance with the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office yet;
       3) Aaron Riley, age 23, of Eatontown, N.J., who is represented by Ralph Stubbs,
       Esquire, of the Elberon section of Long Branch, N.J.;
       4) Sabrina Lipp, age 20, of Eatontown, N.J., who is represented by Elisa Stewart,
       Esquire, of Freehold, N.J.;
       5) Rocco Potts, age 39, of Bradley Beach, N.J., who is represented by James
       Kinarney, Esquire, of Freehold, N.J.;
       6) Leslie Davis, age 42, of Long Branch, N.J.; no attorney has entered an
       appearance with the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office yet;
       7) Anna Murphy, age 40, of Eatontown, N.J., who is represented by Donald Cox,
       Esquire, of Holmdel, N.J.;
       8) Juan Rivera, age 26, of Long Branch, N.J.; no attorney has entered an
       appearance with the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office yet;
       9) Julio Ruiz, age 33, of Long Branch, N.J., who is represented by John Koufos,
       Esquire, of Brick, N.J.
       The indictment alleges that these defendants conspired with each other and others
between May 31, 2007 and September 29, 2007, and that the object of the criminal
conspiracy was the distribution of more than one-half ounce of cocaine.

       The indictment also alleges that on November 30, 2007, Ruiz committed the third
degree crime of Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute and third degree Possession
of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute within 1000 feet of School Property.


                              INDICTMENT NUMBER 08-07-1608

       Indictment number 08-07-1608 charges each of the following individuals with third
degree Conspiracy:

      1) John Moco, a/k/a "Joao Moco," a/k/a "Moc," a/k/a "Mo," age 39, of Long Branch,
      N.J., who is represented by Steven Hernandez, Esquire, of Toms River, N.J.;
      2) Gary Taylor, a/k/a "GT,” a/k/a "JT,” age 39, of Long Branch, N.J., who is
      represented by Paul Zager, Esquire, of Shrewsbury, N.J.;
      3) Jesse Larsen, age 24, of Bradley Beach, N.J., who is represented by Jeffrey
      Coughlin, Esquire, of Freehold, N.J.;
      4) Kevin Dunn, a/k/a "Kev,” age 45, of Long Branch, N.J., who is represented by
      Paul Edinger, Esquire, of West Long Branch, N.J.;
      5) Anthony Palazzolo, a/k/a "Ant,” age 48, of Long Branch, N.J.; no attorney has
      entered an appearance with the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office yet;
      6) Gregory Welsh, a/k/a "Greg,” age 29, of Eatontown, N.J., who is represented by
      Charles Moriarty, Esquire, of Red Bank, N.J.;
      7) Jonathan Novoa, age 28, of Long Branch, N.J., who is represented by Kevin
      Young, Esquire, of Toms River, N.J.;
      8) Nicholas Bruno, a/k/a "Nick,” age 47, of West Long Branch, N.J.; no attorney has
      entered an appearance with the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office yet.

       The indictment alleges that the named conspirators conspired with each other and
others, and that the object of the criminal conspiracy was the possession of cocaine which
they purchased from what the indictment refers to as "unidentified co-conspirators."


                              INDICTMENT NUMBER 08-07-1609

       Indictment number 08-07-1609 charges Latoya Castle, age 22, of Long Branch, N.J.,
with second degree Official Misconduct and fourth degree Obstructing the Administration
of Law. The investigation revealed that Castle, in the course of her employment with the
Long Branch Police Department, obtained information from police reports regarding the
investigation of a Robbery committed in Long Branch on June 20, 2007, in which
Concepcion and Abel were suspects, and then shared that information with Burgos. Castle
is represented by John F. Hazard, Jr., Esquire, of Long Branch, N.J.

       Monmouth County Prosecutor Luis A. Valentin stated, "The investigation which led
to these indictments was complex, thorough, and the result of tremendous cooperation
between numerous law enforcement agencies. We will continue to work cooperatively with
our many law enforcement partners to stop the flow of illegal narcotics in Monmouth
County."
       Drug Enforcement Administration, New Jersey Division, Special Agent-in-Charge
Gerard P. McAleer stated, “In order to stop the flow of drugs, the goal is to eliminate the
drug organization, not the individual dealer. Operation Honeycomb is a great example of
this. Investigators from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office and Special Agents of
the D.E.A., New Jersey Division, followed this investigation throughout the country to
make sure the organization was dismantled.”


                                        FUGITIVE

       One defendant, Santana, a/k/a "Gigi,” a/k/a "Calvo,” formerly of Perth Amboy,
N.J., has not yet been arrested in connection with “Operation Honeycomb.” He has
remained a fugitive since an arrest warrant was issued for him in September of 2007. Any
individual possessing information regarding Santana’s current whereabouts is encouraged
to contact Detective Todd Rue of the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office at 1-800/ 533-
7443. In order to assist members of the public in ascertaining whether they have
information regarding Santana, a photograph of him is attached to this News Release.


                                POTENTIAL PENALTIES

       Under New Jersey law, the crimes of Possession of Cocaine or Heroin with Intent to
Distribute and Distribution of Cocaine or Heroin can be first, second or third degree
crimes. The degree of the crime is determined by the weight of the controlled dangerous
substance. They are first degree crimes if the weight is more than 5 ounces. They are
second degree crimes if the weight is more than one-half ounce. Otherwise, they are third
degree crimes.

       New Jersey law provides that the crime of Conspiracy is usually the same degree as
the degree of the crime that was the object of the Conspiracy, except that a Conspiracy to
commit a crime of the first degree is usually a second degree crime.

       The crime of Endangering the Welfare of a Child is ordinarily a third degree crime.
However, Endangering is elevated from a third degree crime to a second degree crime if at
the time of the commission of the crime the defendant had a legal duty or had assumed
responsibility for the care of the child.

       Upon conviction, the first degree crimes of Racketeering and Leader of a Narcotic
Network each carry a maximum potential custodial sentence of up to life imprisonment. If
convicted of the remaining first degree crimes, the defendants face a maximum potential
custodial sentence of up to 20 years in State Prison. If convicted, the second degree crimes
carry a maximum potential custodial sentence of up to 10 years, the third degree crimes
carry a maximum potential custodial sentence of up to 5 years, and the fourth degree crime
carries a maximum potential custodial sentence of up to 18 months.

        Despite these charges, every defendant is presumed innocent, unless and until found
guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, following a trial at which the defendant has all of the
trial rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and state law.
         The case is assigned to Assistant Monmouth County Prosecutor Jacquelynn F.
Seely.


Released: July 16, 2008

								
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