CAMDEN, N.J. — A Camden, N.J., man was sentenced Tuesday to 85 months in prison for his involvement in a conspiracy to possess and distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine.The case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
Ramon Martinez-Ruiz, 35, of Camden, N.J., was found guilty in October 2011, after a three-day jury trial before U.S. District Judge Robert B. Kugler, of conspiring to distribute and possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine; attempting to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine; and one count of aiding and abetting others in their attempts to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine.
"The assault on New Jersey's citizens by criminals motivated only by greed will not be tolerated," said Andrew McLees, special agent in charge of HSI Newark. "HSI will use all of our law enforcement capabilities to stop the flow of illegal drugs that threaten the safety, security and stability of our communities."
According to court documents, on July 28, 2009, an investigation by HSI led to the seizure of approximately five kilograms of cocaine from a drug courier who had checked in to an airport motel in Elizabeth, N.J.
Martinez-Ruiz conspired with others, including Ruben Sepulveda, 46, and Raul Hernandez, 34, both of Camden, to travel from Camden to the motel to take possession of the cocaine, intending to distribute it in the Camden area. Martinez-Ruiz, Sepulveda and Hernandez were arrested when they arrived at the motel. Approximately $10,000 in cash was seized from Hernandez at the time of the arrest.
In addition to the prison term, Judge Kugler sentenced Martinez-Ruiz to five years of supervised release.
Both Sepulveda and Hernandez pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges and were previously sentenced to 30 months and 45 months in prison, respectively.