Home Louisville Press Releases 2010 Louisville Men Sentenced for Liquor Theft

Louisville Men Sentenced for Liquor Theft

U.S. Attorney’s Office December 03, 2010
  • Eastern District of Kentucky (859) 233-2661

LEXINGTON, KY—Three Louisville men were sentenced yesterday for stealing more than $400,000 worth of liquor.

Vladimir Naranjo-Nieto, 37, Michael Prieto-Cruz, 32, and Efren Rodriguez-Hernandez, 28, were sentenced by United States District Court Judge Karen K. Caldwell for conspiracy and unlawful possession of stolen property. Naranjo-Nieto and Prieto-Cruz received 30 months each, while Rodriguez-Hernandez received 23 months.

All three defendants previously pleaded guilty and admitted that in September of 2009, they, along with two other co-defendants, stole two trailers that contained full loads of liquor belonging to L.J. Rogers Trucking Company in Jeffersonville, Ind.

The two other co-defendants, Juan D. Perez-Gonzales and Mijail Zerquera, were previously sentenced to 23 months each.

One trailer contained products from Jim Beam Brands and the other contained products from Brown-Forman. The cargoes were cosigned for shipment to distributors in North Carolina and Kansas. The combined value of both trailers of liquor totaled approximately $425,000.

The men planned to transport the liquor to New York for resale.

The men drove the trailers from Indiana to Louisville. Once in Louisville, the men attempted to conceal the L.J. Rogers Trucking logos on the trailers by covering them with white paint.

On September 20, 2009, Perez-Gonzales and Zerquera each drove a truck with a stolen trailer of liquor from Louisville into Mt. Sterling, Ky. and were eventually arrested at a truck stop.

Under federal law, the defendants must serve 85 percent of their prison sentence, and, upon release, will be under the supervision of the United States Probation Office for three years.

Kerry B. Harvey, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky; Michael Welch, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Indianapolis, Ind. Field Office; Elizabeth Fries, Special Agent in Charge, FBI, Louisville Field Office; and Rodney Brewer, Commissioner, Kentucky State Police (KSP), jointly made the announcement.

The investigation was conducted by the FBI in New Albany, Indiana, the FBI and KSP Criminal Enterprise Task Force based in Kentucky, and the Kentucky State Police. The United States was represented by Assistant United States Attorney Robert M. Duncan, Jr.