“Boss of Bosses” Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison for International Drug Trafficking Operation

Saturday, December 15, 2018


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The “boss of bosses,” Juan Valdez was sentenced to 20 years in federal prison for leading an international drug trafficking operation.

Valdez, 51, and his brothers Claudio Valdez, 46, and Hector Valdez 45, organized and directed a drug trafficking organization that arranged for numerous multi-kilogram shipments of heroin and cocaine from Mexico to drug stash houses in Cranston and Woonsocket. 

The drugs were then supplied under the Valdez brothers’ direction to mid-level drug dealers and street dealers in the greater Providence and Boston areas and in Hartford, Connecticut.

The Investigation

According to information presented to the Court, Juan Valdez was the direct point of contact with the main drug supplier for the Valdez Drug Trafficking Organization, a Dominican drug supplier referred to as The Maestro. Valdez spent most days at the organization’s primary stash house in Cranston. He largely controlled the organization’s finances.

At sentencing on Friday, U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., sentenced Juan Valdez to 240 months in federal prison to be followed by 5 years supervised release.

Claudio Valdez was sentenced to 20 years in prison on November 28, 2018. Hector Valdez is scheduled to be sentenced on January 18, 2019.

The Valdez brothers, all Dominican nationals, reentered the country illegally after having been previously convicted of felony drug crimes and deported. Juan Valdez reentered the country illegally on at least four occasions. Immigration detainers have been lodged against all three.

In April 2017, based on information developed by the FBI Safe Streets Task Force during an investigation dubbed “Operation Triple Play,” a reference to the three Valdez brothers, the FBI, assisted by federal, state, and local law enforcement agents and officers in three states, executed 16 federal arrest warrants and 13 federal search warrants.

Court-authorized search warrants executed at the Cranston stash house resulted in the seizure of multiple kilograms of controlled substances, primarily fentanyl; several pounds of cutting agents; and more than $351,000 in cash. The drugs and most of the cash were located in sophisticated, electronically-actuated hides constructed under the flooring of the apartment. Law enforcement also seized more than $8,500 from Juan Valdez’s Milton, Mass., residence.


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