News Release
May 29, 2007

Danbury Man Sentenced To 14 Years In Federal Prison For Involvement In Danbury Drug Ring

June W. Stansbury, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration in New England and Kevin J. O’Connor, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that DAVID MELENDEZ, age 23, of Morning Place, Danbury, was sentenced on Friday, May 25, by United States District Judge Stefan R. Underhill in Bridgeport to 168 months of imprisonment, followed by eight years of supervised release, for conspiring to distribute crack cocaine. MELENDEZ pleaded guilty to the charge on May 5, 2006.

According to documents filed with the Court and statements made in court, MELENDEZ’s conviction stems from a long-term, cooperative investigation between the Drug Enforcement Administration in Bridgeport and the Danbury Police Department into a large-scale cocaine and crack cocaine distribution ring led by Alex Luna. During the investigation, law enforcement officers conducted several months of surveillance of suspected drug traffickers, made numerous undercover purchases, and utilized federal wiretaps on five different telephones. As part of the investigation, law enforcement officers conducted searches of several residences in Connecticut and New York and recovered cocaine and crack cocaine, semi-automatic firearms, ammunition, drug-packaging materials, narcotics paraphernalia, and United States currency.

The investigation revealed that narcotics suppliers in New York City made frequent trips to Danbury to deliver kilogram-sized quantities of cocaine to Luna. When making these deliveries, the suppliers would travel in cars containing secret compartments that were designed to hold contraband, such as narcotics, to elude detection by law enforcement. Luna and his associates would also travel regularly to various meeting places in Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Manhattan to pick up illegal narcotics. Once the drugs were received, Luna and others would go to various hotels in the Danbury area to process and package the cocaine and crack cocaine for street sale. MELENDEZ was a street-level seller for Luna’s drug ring.

Twenty-four individuals in Danbury and New York City were arrested, charged, and convicted as a result of this intensive investigation.

On April 3, 2007, Judge Underhill sentenced Luna to 30 years of imprisonment.
This matter was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Danbury Police Department.