MILLIONS IN DRUGS AND GUNS SEIZED FROM ABANDONED HOME
Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced that Victor Rodriguez was indicted on drug and gun charges after a search of an abandoned home in Bellerose uncovered millions of dollars worth of heroin, fentanyl and cocaine and a stockpile of firearms. A contractor hired after the recent sale of the property stumbled upon the stash.
The contractor alerted police, who searched the residence and discovered eight kilograms of heroin, fentanyl and cocaine and 1.5 million glassine envelopes containing heroin or a mix of heroin and fentanyl, all with a street value between $10 million and $11 million. Additionally, several handguns and hundreds of rounds of ammunition were found.
District Attorney Katz said: “One can’t even calculate how many lives would have been cut short or ruined by the millions of dollars worth of lethal narcotics and deadly weapons that were found. What we do know for certain is that our families, friends and neighborhoods are all safer thanks to this massive seizure. We cannot and will not relent in the fight to get drugs and guns off our streets. We will prosecute any and all involved in this deadly trafficking.”
NYPD Commissioner Edward A. Caban said: “The NYPD and our law enforcement partners will never waver in our commitment to rid our city of illegal narcotics and the traffickers responsible for putting New Yorkers’ lives at risk. At the forefront of our public safety mission is holding accountable anyone who displays the depravity to sell these deadly poisons on our streets. I commend and thank the NYPD officers from the 105th Precinct and our Intelligence Bureau, along with everyone involved at the office of the Queens District Attorney, for their tireless efforts on this important case.”
Rodriguez, 43, of 90th Avenue in Jamaica, was arraigned October 27 on a 112-count indictment charging him with operating as a major trafficker; conspiracy in the second and fourth degrees; three counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the first degree; four counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree; four counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fourth degree; two counts of criminally using drug paraphernalia in the second degree; burglary in the first degree; criminal possession of a weapon in the first degree; 26 counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree; 10 counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree; 12 counts of aggravated criminal possession of a weapon; 39 counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree; manufacture, transport, disposition and defacement of weapon and dangerous instruments and appliance; five counts of attempted criminal possession of a firearm; and unlawful possession of pistol ammunition.
If convicted, he faces 25 years to life in prison. Queens Supreme Court Justice Toni Cimino ordered Rodriguez to return to court on November 6.
According to the charges:
- On May 30, at approximately 2:39 p.m., a contractor arrived at an abandoned residence at 249-27 88th Road following the sale of the property.
- Once inside the home, the contractor saw and photographed numerous firearms, gun parts, and large quantities of narcotics, including a white powdery substance in coolers.
- The contractor called 911 and later went to the 105th Precinct to make a report.
- After the contractor left, Rodriguez was seen on surveillance video running to and from the abandoned property with two coolers in his hands. Based on the photos taken, the coolers held what appeared to be 15 kilos of narcotics.
Police executed a court-authorized search warrant on the property the next day and uncovered:
- Approximately 1.5 million glassine envelopes containing either heroin or heroin and fentanyl with a street value of approximately $10 million;
- Eight kilos of cocaine, heroin, and fentanyl with a street value of approximately $500,000;
- At least one plastic bag with a mixture of heroin, fentanyl, cocaine and the opioid pain medicine tramadol;
- Thousands of empty glassine envelopes;
- Three kilo presses commonly used by narcotics traffickers to package large quantities of drugs;
- Two respirator masks used in the production and packaging of illegal narcotics;
- Two electronic scales;
- Five loaded P80 9 mm ghost gun semiautomatic pistols;
- One loaded 9 mm Derringer semiautomatic pistol;
- One loaded .38-caliber revolver;
- One loaded Glock 17 9 mm semiautomatic pistol;
- One loaded Sig Sauer 9 mm pistol;
- One loaded .38-caliber Derringer semiautomatic pistol;
- One loaded Smith and Wesson 9 mm semiautomatic pistol;
- One loaded .40-caliber semiautomatic pistol;
- Five complete ghost gun kits, including unfinished frames that had not yet been made into operable firearms;
- 25 high-capacity ammunition feeding devices;
- Over 200 rounds of assorted ammunition including 9mm, .40 caliber, and .38 caliber;
- A handheld Dremel drill, used to manufacture and/or assemble ghost guns;
- A DVR digital recorder;
- Four cellphones;
- Two parking summonses for a Blue Infiniti SUV that were tied to Rodriguez.
The investigation was conducted by NYPD Officers Rafael Musayev and Miguel Vanbrakle, Detectives Anthony Crescimanno and John Hart, Sergeant Nicholas Bekas, Lieutenant Ramiro Ruiz, and Inspector Igor Pinkhasov, Commanding Officer of the 105th Police Precinct.
Assistant District Attorney Michael Bello of the District Attorney’s Crime Strategies & Intelligence Bureau is prosecuting the case with the assistance of Intelligence Analysts Victora Filipe and Robert Sajeva, and Supervising Intelligence Analyst Jennifer Rudy, under the joint supervision of Assistant District Attorney Shanon LaCorte, Bureau Chief; along with Assistant District Attorney Jonathan Sennett, Bureau Chief of the Violent Criminal Enterprise Bureau, Michelle Goldstein, Senior Deputy Chief, Philip Anderson and Barry Frankenstein, Deputy Bureau Chiefs; under the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney of the Investigations Division Gerard Brave.
**Criminal complaints and indictments are accusations. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.