DENVER – United States Attorney Jason R. Dunn today announced that 23 individuals have been indicted with 37 counts for their role in running a large-scale, Denver-based heroin trafficking organization. The Denver Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration joined in today’s announcement.
According to allegations contained in the indictment as well as information from detention hearings, defendants Azusena Maribel Sierra and her husband Juan Antonio Amaya-Nunez were at the center of the organization. Sierra was the heroin dispatcher and money collector who, on a daily basis, received calls and texts from dozens of street-level customers. Sierra took heroin orders, dispatched multiple runners to meet with, make deliveries to, and collect money from customers, and collected money at the end of the day. The organization distributed approximately 1 kilogram of heroin every week.
Following an investigation that was initiated in September 2019, agents and officers seized approximately 33 kilograms of heroin, approximately $100,000 in cash, and two firearms.
The defendants face charges including conspiracy to distribute heroin, money laundering, transporting heroin in aid of racketeering, and using telephones in connection with drug trafficking.
Of those indicted, 14 defendants have been arrested and have made their initial appearances in U.S. District Court where they were advised of their rights and the charges pending against them. Nine other defendants are pending arrest and are considered fugitives.
Those charged include:
Benjamin Lopes-Alvarado, age 31 and a Mexican National Azusena Maribel Sierra, age 33 and a U.S. Citizen
Hector Nunez-Sandoval, age 34 and a U.S. Citizen
Jorge Reyes Cruz-Garcia, age 19 and a Mexican National
Bradley Michael White, age 32 and a U.S. Citizen
Michael Ian Mills, age 37 and a U.S. Citizen
Anna Marie Rebekah Davis, age 47 and a U.S. Citizen
Keven Alexander Perez, age 29, and a U.S. Citizen
Victoriano Hinojosa, age 31, and a Mexican National
Oscar Manuel Oliveros, age 19, and a Mexican National
Diego Romero-Cruz, age 28, and a Mexican National
Christian Anthony Carver, age 29, and U.S. Citizen
Abisai Escobar Flores, age 42, and a Mexican National
Nicho Garcia, age 24, and a U.S. Citizen
Jesse Cervantes, age 37, and a U.S. Citizen
Victor Alonso Carreon, age 24, and a Mexican National
Adrianna Rafaela Holguin, age 19, and a U.S. Citizen
In addition to the named defendants, six indicted individuals have not been identified.
“Thanks to the great work of the DEA and our team, we’ve dismantled a significant drug trafficking organization in the metro-area,” said U.S. Attorney Jason Dunn. “While others may seek to fill the newly created vacuum, they are on notice that we will come for them with the same zeal that we pursued these defendants.”
“Taking down an organization like this and removing a pipeline of this magnitude can only be accomplished with our law enforcement partners,” said Deanne Reuter, Special Agent in Charge, DEA Denver Field Division. “As long as this poison continues to wreak havoc in our communities the DEA will find those responsible and hold them to account.”
These defendants are being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephanie Podolak. Law enforcement agencies involved in investigation and/or takedown include – the Denver Field Division of the DEA and Denver OCDETF Strike Force Group-1, to include the IRS, Denver Police Department, Aurora Police Department, Northern Colorado Drug Task Force, Arvada Police Department, Colorado Attorney General’s Office, Colorado State Patrol, Boulder County Sheriff’s Office, U.S. Marshal Service, Parker Police Department, and North Las Vegas Police Department.
A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado. Related court documents can be found on PACER. The defendant’s case number is 20-cr-292.
The charges contained in the indictment are allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
This prosecution is part of the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) program. The OCDETF program is a federal multi-agency, multi-jurisdictional task force that supplies supplemental federal funding to federal and state agencies involved in the identification, investigation, and prosecution of major drug trafficking organizations. The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt, and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking, weapons trafficking, and money laundering organizations, and those primarily responsible for the nation’s illegal drug supply.
The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of our agency at www.Justice.gov/Celebrating150Years.