Florida Man Sentenced to More Than Six Years in Prison for Role in Multi-Million-Dollar Drug Theft
The United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut announced that YOSMANY NUNEZ, also known as “El Gato,” 42, of Southwest Ranches, Fla., was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Janet Bond Arterton in New Haven to 75 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for his role in the theft of pharmaceuticals from an Eli Lilly Company warehouse and storage facility in Enfield, Conn.
According to court documents and statements made in court, in early 2010, NUNEZ, Amaury Villa, Amed Villa and Alexander Marquez planned to steal pharmaceuticals from the Eli Lilly Company warehouse and storage facility in Enfield. The investigation revealed that, prior to the theft, NUNEZ and Amaury Villa traveled from the Miami area to Connecticut to gather information about the warehouse facility and the surrounding area. Shortly before the theft, Amed Villa and Rafael Lopez traveled to Flushing, N.Y., where they purchased tools needed to break into the warehouse facility, and then traveled to Connecticut.
In the evening of March 13, 2010, individuals involved in the theft dropped off a ladder in the rear parking lot of the warehouse facility and left. That same night, Marquez drove a tractor trailer to the facility. Thereafter, Amed Villa and Amaury Villa carried the ladder to the building, checked for security in the front area, climbed onto the roof, used the tools Amed Villa and Lopez had purchased to cut a hole in the facility roof, dropped down into the facility and disabled the alarm system. Amaury Villa, Amed Villa and NUNEZ then loaded more than 40 pallets of pharmaceuticals into the tractor trailer, which had been backed up to the loading dock of the warehouse.
The pallets of pharmaceuticals included thousands of boxes Zyprexa, Cymbalta, Prozac, Gemzar and other medicines, valued between $50 and $100 million.
The individuals who participated in the theft split up in Connecticut. Marquez then drove the tractor trailer to Florida, where he subsequently reunited with Amaury Villa, Amed Villa and NUNEZ so the pharmaceuticals could be transferred from the tractor trailer into self-storage units in the Miami area.
On October 14, 2011, law enforcement authorities searched a storage facility in Florida and recovered pharmaceuticals that had been stolen from the Enfield warehouse.
Judge Arterton ordered NUNEZ to pay restitution in the approximate amount of $60 million, but the exact amount of restitution to be ordered will be determined after further submissions by the parties.
NUNEZ, a citizen of Cuba, has been detained since his arrest on April 17, 2014. On November 5, 2014, he pleaded guilty to one count of transportation of stolen property.
Amaury Villa, Amed Villa, Marquez and Lopez have pleaded guilty and await sentencing.
This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Enfield Police Department, with the assistance of several other U.S. Attorney’s Offices and federal, state and local law enforcement agencies that have been investigating large-scale thefts of pharmaceuticals and other products.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Anastasia E. King and Douglas P. Morabito.