Drug Enforcement Administration

New York

Raymond P. Donovan, Special Agent in Charge

April 14, 2011

Contact: Erin Mulvey

Phone Number: (212) 337-2906

Sixteen Members Of Cocaine Trafficking Ring Operating In Yonkers And Bronx, New York, Charged In White Plains Federal Court

WHITE PLAINS, NY. - JOHN P. GILBRIDE, the Special Agent-in-Charge of the New York Field Division of the Drug Enforcement ("DEA") and PREET BHARARA, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, today announced the unsealing of an Indictment charging 16 members of a drug trafficking ring operating in Yonkers and Bronx, New York, with federal narcotics charges.

DEA Special Agent in Charge JOHN P. GILBRIDE stated: "Law enforcement aptly named this group the ‘4040’ organization since the majority of their drug distribution operated from 4040 Bronx Boulevard. By working together, DEA and our counterparts have dismantled this organization and they will not be peddling poison throughout 4040 or to any of their distributors in the future. Not only did we work the investigation from the streets to the source of supply and successfully arrested those responsible, but we took them out of communities and neighborhoods who have the right to live drug free."

Manhattan U.S. Attorney PREET BHARARA stated: “The4040 Organization allegedly operated like a veritable small business, with sophisticated sales and distribution arms. As this case demonstrates, we will not allow drug traffickers to disrupt and endanger our communities. We will continue working with our federal, state, and local law enforcement partners to take these people off the streets and bring them to justice.”

According to the Indictment unsealed today in White Plains federal court:

From April 2010 through April 2011, a drug trafficking ring referred to in the Indictment as the "4040 Organization" because it allegedly operated primarily out of a Bronx, NY, apartment building at 4040 Bronx Boulevard, obtained and distributed large quantities of cocaine in Yonkers and the Bronx, among other locations.

STEVEN NEGRON, a leader of the 4040 Organization, obtained cocaine from several different sources, including, ARNOLD AREIZAGA, MARTIN FERNANDEZ, MIGUEL ANGEL PIAZZA, and DONALD THOMAS. Certain members of the 4040 Organization, including, JONATHAN LOPEZ, JOSE SANALI-FIGUEROA, and ALBERTO SANTOS, assisted FERNANDEZ and PIAZZA by transporting the cocaine to NEGRON at 4040 Bronx Boulevard and/or collecting the proceeds from previous sales.

Other members of the 4040 Organization, including, among others, MELVIN DEJESUS MARTINEZ, THOMAS J. RODRIGUEZ, and LUIS DEL ROSARIO, obtained cocaine from STEVEN NEGRON for further distribution, and provided NEGRON with the proceeds of the sales of the cocaine. NEGRON, in turn, provided a portion of the proceeds to his suppliers.

LUIS DEL ROSARIO, with the assistance of ZACHARIAS JOSE, distributed the cocaine to other members of the 4040 Organization including, MAXIMO GONZALES, PEDRO GARCIA, VINICIO JOSE JOSE, and JULIUS RODRIGUEZ I, who sold the cocaine to retail customers in and around Yonkers and Bronx, New York.

Beginning last night and continuing through this morning, federal and local law enforcement officers have been making arrests and conducting searches in connection with the Indictment and investigation, primarily in Yonkers and Bronx, New York.

Law enforcement agencies involved in the case include members of the DEA, the Westchester County Drug Enforcement Task Force, the U.S. Marshals Service for the Southern District of New York, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement/Office of Enforcement and Removal Operations in Castle Point, New York, and the Yonkers Police Department.

The arrested defendants are expected to be arraigned this afternoon in White Plains federal court before a Magistrate Judge. All of the defendants are charged with conspiring to distribute five kilograms and more of cocaine. If convicted, the defendants all face maximum sentences of life and mandatory minimum sentences of 10 years in prison.

This case is being handled by the White Plains Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Assistant United States Attorneys DOUGLAS BLOOM and KATHRYN MARTIN are in charge of the prosecution.

The charges contained in the Indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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