U.S. Attorney’s Office
February 21, 2013
Eastern District of New York
Members of Bedford-Stuyvesant-Based Drug Ring Charged with Narcotics Trafficking
Six Defendants Arrested; Agents Seize Firearms, Crack, Cocaine, Heroin, Money, and Drug Paraphernalia
An indictment was unsealed today in Brooklyn federal court charging six defendants from the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn, New York with trafficking crack and powder cocaine.1 Four of the arrested defendants are scheduled to be arraigned today before United States Magistrate Judge Viktor V. Pohorelsky, at the U.S. Courthouse, 225 Cadman Plaza East, Brooklyn, New York. A fifth defendant was arrested yesterday in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. A sixth is currently in being held in Vermont state custody on narcotics charges and will be brought to Brooklyn for arraignment on the federal indictment.
The charges and arrests were announced by Loretta E. Lynch, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York; George Venizelos, Assistant Director in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office; and Raymond W. Kelly, Commissioner, New York City Police Department.
A one-year joint investigation by the FBI and the NYPD resulted in the charges against members of a narcotics trafficking organization based in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. As detailed in the indictment and a detention memorandum filed by the government, Glenn Miller, also known as Chewy; Jaron Johnson, also known as Jay Jay; Rashawn Johnson, also known as SB; Raumel Johnson; Azee Patterson; and Eric South together trafficked cocaine and cocaine base (or crack), supplying street-level drug dealers with narcotics for resale. During the investigation, investigating agents intercepted communications over a series of cellular telephones used by Rashawn Johnson, pursuant to court-authorized wiretaps, purchased over 500 grams of cocaine base from Rashawn Johnson through a confidential informant, and executed two search warrants. Also during the investigation, state authorities in upstate New York and Vermont arrested Patterson in possession of distribution-level quantities of heroin, cocaine, and cocaine base. As described in the detention memorandum, the investigation revealed that the defendants engaged in daily drug trafficking of large quantities of narcotics in Brooklyn and transported narcotics to upstate New York and Vermont for resale.
During the wiretaps, the defendants spoke in code, referring to “eight-balls” or 3.5 gram quantities of narcotics as “squirrelies,” and two-hundred gram quantities of narcotics as a “deuce.” During one intercepted call, Rashawn Johnson reported to a co-conspirator that he had prepared approximately 198 grams of cocaine base, or crack, with a street wholesale value of approximately $7,900, for Miller. During the call, the co-conspirator asked Rashawn Johnson, “You do that (expletive deleted) for Chewy [Miller] already?” Rashawn Johnson answered: “Yea. I been do that (expletive deleted) already.” The co-conspirator asked, “Was it that much?” Rashawn Johnson answered, “Na. It was only a deuce. Not even a deuce. A little under a deuce. Like a buck 98.” As alleged by the government in the detention memorandum, the defendants’ drug business was of a sufficiently large scale that 198 grams of crack cocaine was considered a small amount.
Glenn Miller, Rashawn Johnson, Raumel Johnson, and Eric South were arrested yesterday afternoon in Brooklyn. As alleged in government filings, contemporaneously with the arrests, agents executed search warrants and seized two kilograms of cocaine, 24 grams of cocaine base, two .45 caliber handguns, two .22 caliber handguns, scales and materials for making cocaine base from the defendants’ stash house in Bedford-Stuyvesant, and 10 grams of heroin, over $6,000 in currency, and an electronic money counter from a residence across the street. Jaron Johnson was arrested yesterday by FBI agents in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. At the time of his arrest, Jaron Johnson possessed approximately $23,000 in currency. Jaron Johnson will be arraigned today in United States District Court in Pennsylvania.
“As set forth in the indictment, instead of working to improve the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood, the defendants chose to supply crack and powder cocaine to their community, building a lucrative narcotics organization. The narcotics trade siphons off not just dollars from those affected, but hope and opportunity. This case also illustrates how drug trafficking and illegal firearms go hand in hand. We are committed to removing the scourge of illegal guns and drugs from our communities, and holding those who possess and sell them accountable for their conduct,” stated United States Attorney Lynch. Ms. Lynch expressed her grateful appreciation to the NYPD and added that the government’s investigation is ongoing.
FBI Assistant Director in Charge Venizelos stated, “It’s hardly a surprise, in a case where the indictment charges drug trafficking, to find a cache of guns. Guns—and the potential for gun violence—go hand-in-hand with illegal drugs. That connection between drugs and guns is why the FBI will continue to work with the police department to curtail drug trafficking.”
The cases have been assigned to United States District Judge Eric N. Vitaliano. If convicted of the most serious offenses in the indictment, the defendants face a maximum sentence of life imprisonment and a minimum sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment.
The government’s case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Matthew Amatruda.
1 The charges contained in the indictment are merely allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
Alias: Jay Jay