PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- A Dominican national authorities describe as the kingpin of a major fentanyl and cocaine trafficking ring admitted to his crimes Thursday in federal court.
Ramon Delossantos, 25, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell Jr. to one count each of conspiring to distribute more than 400 grams of the powerful and potentially deadly painkiller fentanyl and distribute more than 5 kilograms of cocaine in what federal prosecutors say was a well-entrenched illicit organization that supplied drugs throughout New England.
Delossantos, of Cumberland, who is also known as Junior or El Guy, listened intently through a Spanish language interpreter as McConnell told him that he could face as much as life in prison and $20 million in fines at his sentencing in September.
Wearing black Nike sneakers and a tan prison outfit, with tattoos snaking up his arms, Delossantos acknowledged that he is not a U.S. citizen and is likely to be deported as a result of his plea.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement had placed a detainer on Delossantos following his arrest by Providence police on a firearms charge in 2014, but he was released from the Adult Correctional Institutions upon completion of his sentence in May 2016 and never reported to probation. He came back on the radar with his arrest in October in what officials said was the dismantling of a major drug ring, with Delossantos, who entered the country illegally in 2011, at the top.
“I have no doubt that lives have been saved in Rhode Island,” DEA Resident Agent in Charge Sam Masiello said at the time. The investigation, dubbed Operation Panamera for the luxury 2010 Porsche Delossantos drove, netted 27 arrests and thwarted the delivery of narcotics coming in to the region from Mexico and Puerto Rico, sometimes through the mail.
Under the plea agreement, Delossantos must forfeit the Panamera; a 2014 BMW; countless diamonds and other jewelry; two computers; and high-end Dita, Versace and Cazal sunglasses.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Milind Shah described for the court Delossantos and his co-conspirator driving to North Carolina last September to pick up 10 kilograms of fentanyl and arranging deliveries of kilograms of cocaine through the mail.
Investigators seized at least 23 kilograms of suspected fentanyl; 11 kilograms each of cocaine and marijuana; and 2 kilograms of psychedelic mushrooms over the course of the eight-month investigation, prosecutors said. The seizures were conducted via the U.S. Postal Service, during traffic stops and in court-authorized searches of homes, storage units and vehicles, authorities said.
Also charged in the sweep were Rinaxo M. Rufino, 33, of Miramar, Florida, and Gabriel Concepcion, 27, of Kissimmee, Florida, on conspiracy to traffic cocaine charges for allegedly arranging to ship cocaine from Puerto Rico to Providence, Woonsocket and Central Falls. Jamaal “Dub” Dublin, 35, of Harley Street, West Warwick, is also facing a charge of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute controlled substances.
Delossantos has previously been convicted of drug trafficking and firearms charges in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, authorities said. Most recently, he served time at the Adult Correctional Institutions in December 2014 on firearms charges. Immigration and Customs Enforcement placed a detainer on him, but he was released from the ACI upon completion of his sentence in May 2016, according to the news release.
Delossantos is represented by Michael J. Lepizzera and Damon P. Borrelli.