TRENTON – Acting Attorney General Thomas R. Calcagni announced that a major cocaine supplier who led a Camden drug network was sentenced to state prison today for racketeering. Four co-defendants are awaiting sentencing.
Luis Burgos, 34, of Camden, was sentenced to 10 years in state prison by Superior Court Judge Michael J. Kassel in Camden. He must serve 8 ½ years of the sentence without possibility of parole under the No Early Release Act. Burgos pleaded guilty on April 29 to first-degree racketeering.
Burgos was charged as a result of a cooperative investigation, Operation Jumpstart, involving state, county, local and federal authorities. The investigation determined that Burgos led a drug network that was distributing cocaine in the Camden area. He was having large quantities of cocaine transported from Puerto Rico to Newark, N.J., and New York on commercial airlines for distribution in Camden. In pleading guilty, Burgos admitted, among other things, that on April 6, 2011, he sold approximately 10 ounces of cocaine to a cooperating law enforcement witness in Camden.
Deputy Attorney General Kristen Harberg prosecuted Burgos and handled the sentencing for the Division of Criminal Justice Gangs & Organized Crime Bureau.
“Drug dealing and violent crime are inextricably linked on the streets of Camden and our other big cities, so removing a major narcotics supplier like Burgos by placing him behind bars for a long time is a commonsense approach to curbing violence,” said Acting Attorney General Calcagni. “In order to protect Camden residents, we will continue to conduct these strategic, multi-agency drug investigations, while also fighting gun crime with operations targeting illegal guns and gun trafficking.”
“Operation Jumpstart combined the efforts of state, county, local and federal law enforcement agencies to address a priority we all share – dismantling dangerous drug sets in order to improve public safety in Camden,” said Director Elie Honig of the Division of Criminal Justice. “We remain committed to working with our law enforcement partners to bring targeted, high-impact cases in Camden.”
Burgos was among 28 defendants indicted in December 2011 by the Division of Criminal Justice. Three co-defendants pleaded guilty last month in connection with the plea deal involving Burgos:
- Rasool “Zool” Jones, 36, of Camden, pleaded guilty on May 6 to second-degree money laundering. The state will recommend that he be sentenced to seven years in state prison. His sentencing is scheduled for June 14.
- Samuel Morales III, 38, of Clayton, pleaded guilty on May 28 to second-degree conspiracy to commit money laundering. The state will recommend that he be sentenced to four years in state prison. His sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 30.
- Joseph Thompson III, 30, of Camden, pleaded guilty on May 31 to third-degree conspiracy to distribute cocaine. The state will recommend that he be sentenced to three years in state prison. His sentencing is scheduled for July 12.
A fourth co-defendant, Christopher Ferreras, 32, of Philadelphia, is scheduled to be sentenced next month. Ferreras pleaded guilty on Sept. 28, 2012, to second-degree conspiracy to distribute cocaine, admitting that twice in April 2011 he sold cocaine to a cooperating witness on behalf of Burgos, selling 9 ounces on one occasion and 4 ½ ounces on another. The state will recommend that he be sentenced to eight years in state prison. His sentencing is scheduled for July 12.
Operation Jumpstart was conducted by the New Jersey State Police, the Division of Criminal Justice, the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office, the Gloucester County Prosecutor’s Office, the New Jersey Division of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, and other members of the High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Joint Camden Task Force, including the Camden City Police Department, the Camden County Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Marshals Service, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Cherry Hill Police Department, the Evesham Police Department, the Woodbury Police Department and the Air National Guard.