United States Attorney Jason R. Dunn has announced the indictment of 23 individuals with 37 counts for their role in operating a large-scale heroin trafficking organization out of Denver.
Defendants Azusena Maribel Sierra and her husband Antonio Amaya-Nunez were at the center of the organization according to allegations within the indictment and information from detention hearings. Azusena was the heroin dispatcher and the one who collected money, receiving calls and texts from dozens of street-level customers on a daily basis.
Furthermore, Azusena took orders for heroin, dispatched multiple runners to meet with, make deliveries to and collect money from customers. The organization distributed an estimated total of 1 kilogram of heroin each week.
Agents and officers seized approximately 33 kilograms of heroin, $100,000 in cash, and two firearms following an investigation initiated in September of last year. The defendants are currently facing charges from conspiracy to distribute heroin and money laundering to transporting heroin in aid of racketeering and using telephones in connection with drug trafficking.
“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,” Jason said.
14 defendants have been arrested and made their initial appearances in U.S. District Court where they were advised of their rights and the charges currently pending against them. Nine other defendants are pending arrest and are considered fugitives.
Those charged are as follows:
- 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
These defendants are being prosecuted by Assitant U.S. Attorney Stephanie Podolak. Law enforcement agencies involved in the investigation or the 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.
In addition to the named defendants, six indicted individuals have not been identified. The charges contained in the indictment are allegations and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
“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,” Deanne said.
For more information regarding the United States Department of Justice, visit: http://www.justice.gov/usao/co or if you or someone you know needs help overcoming drugs or alcohol, visit: https://drughelpline.org/ or call 844-289-0879