Last Defendant Charged in 2004 Double Homicide Convicted; Another Pleads Guilty to Drug Charges
BUFFALO, NY—U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Misael Montalvo, 39 and Carmen Justiniano Ramirez, 29, both of New York City, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute cocaine before U.S. District Judge Richard J. Arcara. Montalvo faces a mandatory minimum 10 years in prison, a maximum of life and a $10,000,000 fine. Ramirez faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $1,000,000 fine.
“With today’s convictions, the last person charged in connection with the murders Nelson and Miguel Camacho has now been brought to justice. The results of this prosecution—along with those involving violence perpetrated on the West Side of Buffalo—are directly observable as today peace and prosperity have replaced narcotics trafficking, misery and pain. This Office looks forward to continuing its efforts to eliminate all violent street gangs operating in Western New York.”
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joseph M. Tripi and Wei Xiang, who are handling the case, stated that between 2000 and November 2011, the defendants sold cocaine in the Buffalo area. Montalvo and Justiniano Ramirez resided in Buffalo until 2004 at which time, the couple moved to Queens, NY. Montalvo returned to the Buffalo area on average two times a month to sell cocaine. Ramirez accompanied him on a number of occasions.
The Government contends that, during the course of the drug conspiracy, Montalvo participated in events on November 11, 2004, which resulted in the deaths of Nelson and Miguel Camacho. Montalvo disputes the claim that he had any involvement in the deaths of the Camacho brothers, and the Court will make a finding at sentencing after hearing arguments and testimony. Josue Ortiz served 10 years in state prison for the murders of the brothers. His conviction was recently vacated by an Erie County Court judge based on the findings of this federal investigation.
The pleas are the culmination of an investigation on the part of Special Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation Safe Streets Task Force, the New York State Police, under the direction of Major Michael Cerretto, the Buffalo Police Department, under the direction of Commissioner Daniel Derenda, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Delano A. Reid, New York Division.
Justiniano Ramirez and Montalvo will be sentenced on June 30, 2015 at 12:30 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. respectively before Judge Arcara.