Home Organization Camden Man Recognizes His Role in a Drug Trafficking Organization | USAO-NJ

Camden Man Recognizes His Role in a Drug Trafficking Organization | USAO-NJ

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CAMDEN, NJ – A team leader of a Camden drug trafficking organization today admitted his role in the plot to distribute more than a kilogram of heroin, Acting Prosecutor Rachael A. Honig.

Jose Diaz, 29, of Camden, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Renée Marie Bumb in Camden Federal Court to an indictment accusing him of conspiracy to distribute and possess in the intention to distribute one kilogram of a mixture containing heroin, 280 grams or more of a mixture containing crack, a mixture containing cocaine and a mixture containing fentanyl.

A total of 19 defendants were arrested in late 2018 on drug trafficking charges based on the FBI’s investigation into a drug trafficking organization that ran the outdoor narcotics business on the 400-500 block of Pine Street in Camden for several months in 2018. The investigation used video surveillance, confidential informants, consensual recordings, controlled drug purchases and several court-authorized wiretaps to uncover the inner workings of the drug trafficking organization. The organization included street vendors, who worked in various positions selling drugs to customers and collecting drug proceeds. These salespeople were flanked by different layers of managers, including Diaz, who in turn supplied them with prepackaged heroin, some of which was mixed with fentanyl, as well as cocaine and crack. The FBI and other law enforcement officials recovered multiple guns from various locations linked to the drug organization at the time of the 2018 arrests.

Sixteen other members of the drug trafficking conspiracy have already pleaded guilty in this case. The charges against two other defendants, Juan Figueroa and Christopher Vasquez, remain pending. Their trial is scheduled for May 9, 2022.

The count Diaz pleaded guilty to carries a mandatory 10-year prison sentence, a potential maximum life sentence and a fine of $ 10 million. The judgment is scheduled for March 21, 2022.

Acting US Attorney Honig credited the Special Agents of the FBI’s South Jersey Violent Offenders and Gangs Task Force, South Jersey Resident Agency, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jacqueline Maguire in Philadelphia; the Camden County Police Department, under the direction of Chief Gabriel Rodriguez; the Camden County District Attorney’s Office, under the direction of Acting District Attorney Jill S. Mayer; the Camden County Sheriff‘s Department, under the direction of Sheriff Gilbert L. Wilson; the Cherry Hill Police Department, under the direction of Acting Chief Larry Robb; and the NJ State Police, under the direction of Col. Patrick J. Callahan, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea. She also thanked the Drug Enforcement Administration, the US Marshals Service, and the Department of Homeland Security for their help.

This case is part of an operation of the working groups against drugs against organized crime (OCDETF). The OCDETF identifies, disrupts and dismantles the highest level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a multi-agency, prosecutor-led, intelligence-led approach. Additional information on the OCDETF program is available at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

The government is represented by Assistant US Prosecutors Sara A. Aliabadi and Patrick C. Askin of the Criminal Division of the US Attorney’s Office in Camden.

For those accused whose charges remain outstanding, the charges and allegations are only charges, and they are presumed innocent until proven guilty.