News Release
For Immediate Release:
November 12, 2009
Contact: Special Agent Tony Pettigrew
Number: 617-557-2138

Twelve Charged as a Result of Joint Investigation of Alleged New Haven Heroin Trafficking Ring

NOV 12 -- Steven W. Derr, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and Nora R. Dannehy, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that a federal grand jury sitting in New Haven has returned an indictment charging 12 individuals for their alleged participation in a New Haven-based heroin distribution ring.  The indictment was returned yesterday, November 9.

The indictment stems from “Operation Oceanfront,” a long-term Drug Enforcement Administration Task Force investigation, which included the participation of several local police departments.  According court documents and statements made in court, the investigation included the use of court-authorized wiretaps on wireless phones used by two members of the organization who are alleged to have dispatched street-level heroin dealers employed by the organization to meet with its heroin customers.  During the course of the investigation, DEA Task Force agents intercepted thousands of calls that allegedly pertained to narcotics trafficking.  In addition to the wiretap intercepts, the DEA made several controlled purchases of heroin during the investigation.

Charged in the indictment are:

MOISES VALENTIN-CANDELARIA, a.k.a. “Primo,” 37, of Ocean Avenue, West Haven,

ANGEL AVILA, a.k.a. “Melasa Avila” and “Rob,” 28, of Ashmun Street, New Haven,

RAMON VASQUEZ, 32, of Carson Street, Hazelton, Pennsylvania,

ELVIN AGOSTO, a.k.a. “E,” 28, of Baldwin Street, Bridgeport,

FELIX ALBERTO RAMOS, a.k.a. “Felix Vincente-Sanchez” and “Alberto,” 35, of Valentine Avenue, the Bronx, New York,

RANDY WASHINGTON, a.k.a. “Pepe,” 22, of County Street, New Haven,

DOMINGO ROSARIO, a.k.a. “Benito” and “Chiqui,” 39, of Davenport Avenue, New Haven,

ROBERT CALO, a.k.a. “Papito,” 50, of Chapel Street, New Haven,

SAUL VALENTIN, a.k.a. “Rally,” 29, of State Street, Hamden,

JUAN HERNANDEZ, a.k.a. “Tony,” 35, of Oakridge Drive, New Haven,

RAFAEL VIZCARRONDO, a.k.a. “Cafe,” 54, of, Saltonstall Avenue, New Haven,

BLAS ZAYAS, a.k.a. “Boricua” and “Bori,” 39, of First Avenue, West Haven

If convicted of the charges in the indictment VALENTIN-CANDELARIA, AVILA, VASQUEZ, AGOSTO, and RAMOS face maximum terms of imprisonment of life.  VALENTIN, HERNANDEZ and ZAYAS face maximum terms of imprisonment 40 years, and WASHINGTON, ROSARIO, CALO and VIZCARRONDO face maximum terms of imprisonment of 20 years.

This matter has been investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration and officers from area police departments, including the New Haven Police Department’s patrol and narcotics units; the West Haven Police Department, which assigned five officers to the investigation; the Meriden Police Department; the Branford Police Department, and the Ansonia Police Department.  The United States Marshals Service also offered critical assistance to the investigation.