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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Drug bust, arrest, seizures, etc. 7/12/12

    I.C.E. News Release

    July 11, 2012
    Greenbelt, MD

    9 charged in alleged $950,000 marijuana distribution and money laundering conspiracy

    GREENBELT, Md. — A federal grand jury has indicted nine individuals charged with conspiring to distribute more than 2,200 pounds of marijuana and with conspiring to conduct financial transactions to conceal the source and ownership of the proceeds of the drug distribution, following an investigation led by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) along with the Prince George's County Police Department.

    "Earlier today, Homeland Security Investigations special agents executed seven arrest warrants in Maryland and two in Arizona resulting in the dismantling of a suspected drug trafficking and money laundering organization," said William Winter, HSI special agent in charge in Baltimore. "This is an excellent example of how teamwork between HSI and the Prince George's County Police Department benefits our communities. HSI works aggressively to keep illegal drugs out of our communities, and to dismantle the criminal networks that profit from drug trafficking and the crime that surrounds it."

    The two-count indictment filed in the District of Maryland was returned July 9 and unsealed Wednesday upon the HSI arrests of the following defendants:
    Jose Valenzuela, 58, of Nogales, Ariz.;
    Beatriz Valenzuela, 55, of Nogales;
    Antonio Hill Jr., aka NuNu, 32, of Largo, Md.;
    Erico Hill, aka Rico, 31, of Hyattsville, Md.;
    James Lewis Jr., aka Little Man, 22, of Hyattsville;
    Kenneth Davis, aka Benny, 24, of Hyattsville;
    Ernest Rawlings Jr., aka Junior, 29, of Riverdale, Md.;
    Errol Comma, aka E, age 30, of Lanham, Md.; and
    Jane Nkemateh, aka Jayne Nekematah, 28, of New Carrollton, Md.

    The indictment seeks the forfeiture of $950,000, believed to be the value of the cash and property involved in the conspiracies. The defendants each face a maximum sentence of life in prison for the drug conspiracy and 20 years in prison for the money laundering conspiracy. An initial appearance has been scheduled for the Valenzuelas June 11 in U.S. District Court in Tucson, Ariz. The remaining defendants will have an initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt this afternoon.

    "I am proud of the efforts put forth by the Prince George's County Police Department's Narcotics Enforcement Division investigators. Their work at combating this elaborate criminal scheme will prevent untold amounts of illegal drugs from spreading across communities in our county," said Prince George's County Police Chief Mark A. Magaw.

    The indictment alleges that from at least June 6, 2011 to the present, the defendants conspired to transport marijuana from Arizona to Maryland. The indictment further alleges that Jose Valenzuela and his wife, Beatriz Valenzuela, shipped marijuana from Arizona to Maryland and received proceeds in return, while Antonio Hill Jr., coordinated the shipment of drugs from Arizona to Maryland and managed the laundering of the proceeds to the sources of supply in Arizona, with the assistance of his brother, Erico Hill, who, according to the indictment, also coordinated the distribution of the marijuana in Maryland. The indictment further alleges that James Lewis Jr., Ernest Rawlings Jr., Errol Comma and Jane Nkemateh all assisted in the receipt of packages containing marijuana from Arizona; and that Lewis and Kenneth Davis further assisted in the repackaging of marijuana for distribution in Maryland, and the laundering of the proceeds to the sources of supply in Arizona.

    According to the indictment, it was part of the conspiracy that the co-conspirators structured financial transactions, keeping the transactions to less than $10,000 to evade IRS filing requirements for transactions involving more than $10,000 in cash, and conceal from the government large cash transactions by narcotics dealers. The indictment further alleges that the co-conspirators used third parties to open bank accounts at multiple financial institutions to promote the distribution of marijuana and conceal funds that were derived from drug proceeds.

    An indictment is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.

    The investigation was conducted by HSI Baltimore, HSI Phoenix and the Prince George's County Police Department and is an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force case.

    The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mara Zusman Greenberg and Christen A. Sproule.

    U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is the largest investigative arm of the Department of Homeland Security.

    ICE is a 21st century law enforcement agency with broad responsibilities for a number of key homeland security priorities. For more information, visit U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. To report suspicious activity, call 1-866-347-2423 or complete our tip form.

    U.S. Dept of Homeland Security

    9 charged in alleged $950,000 marijuana distribution and money laundering conspiracy
    NO AMNESTY

    DON'T REWARD THE CRIMINAL ACTIONS OF MILLIONS OF ILLEGAL ALIENS

    BY GIVING THEM CITIZENSHIP

  2. #2
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    I.C.E. News Release

    July 11, 2012
    Seattle, WA

    Canadian drug smuggling pilot pleads guilty ahead of re-trial

    Helicopter pilot nabbed during Operation Frozen Timber faces minimum 5-year prison term

    SEATTLE — A Canadian man extradited to the U.S. to face federal charges of conspiracy to import marijuana pleaded guilty Wednesday, pre-empting a re-trial and ending a protracted legal fight to derail the prosecution.

    Henry Rosenau, 61, of Armstrong, British Columbia, was indicted in 2006 following a cross-border investigation dubbed "Operation Frozen Timber" led by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

    The 2005 operation led authorities to the Okanogan National Forest where undercover special agents observed Rosenau and his co-conspirators smuggling BC Bud marijuana into the United States and cocaine into Canada using helicopters. The first of its kind operation led HSI to develop new techniques to detect and suppress this type of border smuggling.

    In his plea agreement, Rosenau admits that, between 2000 and 2005, he flew dozens of loads of marijuana into forested areas in western and eastern Washington, Idaho and Montana. He also smuggled Canadians across the border into the U.S. to work as drug mules to transport their illicit cargo across the U.S.

    "Rosenau and his co-conspirators thought they had the perfect plan to smuggle drugs into the United States, but obviously they were mistaken," said Brad Bench, special agent in charge of HSI Seattle. "Treacherous terrain, remote locations and the use of aircraft didn't shield these criminals from justice. HSI is relentless in its pursuit of smugglers – where they go, HSI will be on their trail."

    As part of his plea agreement, Rosenau will drop his lawsuits that have delayed prosecution since his last proceeding ended in a mistrial. He vigorously fought extradition and had filed lawsuits in Canada against witnesses, law enforcement and prosecutors. He has admitted that those lawsuits were frivolous.

    Rosenau was first contacted by Canadian law enforcement in 2005 as he returned to Canada after delivering a load. In the helicopter's cockpit, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) found a loaded handgun, night vision goggles, two satellite telephones and a GPS device that contained known landing sites used by marijuana traffickers.

    The crime of conspiracy to import marijuana carries a mandatory minimum five-year prison term and a maximum sentence of up to 40 years. Under the terms of the plea agreement, he faces between five and 10 years in prison.

    More than 40 defendants were indicted in connection with Operation Frozen Timber. During the course of the operation, U.S. and Canadian enforcement teams intercepted more than 17 drug loads, including more than 5,000 pounds of BC Bud and one shipment in February 2005 involving five suitcases packed with 169 kilograms of cocaine.

    Operation Frozen Timber was conducted under the auspices of the Integrated Border Enforcement Team (IBET), a multi-agency law enforcement team comprised of representatives from Canadian and U.S. law enforcement agencies. Members of the IBETs work together with local, state and provincial enforcement agencies to target cross-border criminal activity, including investigations involving national security and organized crime. Additional assistance was provided by U.S. Forest Service Law Enforcement and Investigations. The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Washington is prosecuting the case.

    Editor's Note: ICE video available at DVIDS - Video - Operation Frozen Timber.

    U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is the largest investigative arm of the Department of Homeland Security.

    ICE is a 21st century law enforcement agency with broad responsibilities for a number of key homeland security priorities. For more information, visit U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. To report suspicious activity, call 1-866-347-2423 or complete our tip form.

    U.S. Dept of Homeland Security

    Canadian drug smuggling pilot pleads guilty ahead of re-trial
    NO AMNESTY

    DON'T REWARD THE CRIMINAL ACTIONS OF MILLIONS OF ILLEGAL ALIENS

    BY GIVING THEM CITIZENSHIP

  3. #3
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    NO AMNESTY

    DON'T REWARD THE CRIMINAL ACTIONS OF MILLIONS OF ILLEGAL ALIENS

    BY GIVING THEM CITIZENSHIP

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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Not guilty plea from man accused of leaving child while drinking in bar

    July 12, 2012 6:37 PM EST</em>
    SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A man accused of leaving his 11-year-old son in his car while he got drunk inside a City Heights bar pleaded not guilty Thursday to felony cocaine possession and misdemeanor child endangerment charges.

    Jose Ramon Hernandez, 46, faces up to four years in prison if convicted.

    Deputy District Attorney Scott Pirrello told Judge David Szumowski that the defendant left his son in the car from about 10 p.m. through midnight on July 9 while he became very intoxicated inside the El Uno Bar in the 3400 block of University Avenue.

    About 11:55 p.m., a concerned citizen saw the child crying in the back of the car and notified authorities, Pirrello said.
    When police contacted the defendant, he had a baggie of cocaine in his pocket, the prosecutor alleged.

    The boy, who was taken to the Polinsky Children's Center in Kearny Mesa, told police he had been in the car for several hours, was scared, needed to go to the bathroom and had no idea when his father was coming out of the bar.

    Hernandez -- who has an immigration hold -- had his bail set at $50,000. He will be back in court July 23 for a readiness conference and July 25 for a preliminary hearing.

    Cities going broke: Can Scranton's minimum wage plan work? - CSMonitor.com
    NO AMNESTY

    DON'T REWARD THE CRIMINAL ACTIONS OF MILLIONS OF ILLEGAL ALIENS

    BY GIVING THEM CITIZENSHIP

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