MIAMI (CBSMiami) – For seven years, a Miami-based drug trafficking operation used cargo ships to smuggle cocaine into South Florida. Now the ringleaders are heading to prison.
David Rodriguez, 47, of Miami, and Rogny Jerez Lopez, 35, of Hialeah, were sentenced Wednesday in federal court. Rodriguez got 235 months in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release, and Rogny Jerez Lopez was sentenced to 87 months in prison, followed by two years of supervised release.
An investigation revealed that beginning in approximately 2005 through 2012, Rodriguez, the leader of a Miami-based drug-trafficking organization, and Jerez Lopez, a former King Ocean Services employee working at Port Everglades, were involved in the importation of millions of dollars’ worth of cocaine.
Rodriguez, Jerez Lopez and their co-conspirators smuggled the cocaine into the United States by having it concealed inside cargo containers while King Ocean Services cargo vessels were docked at ports overseas. Once the vessels arrived at Port Everglades, Jerez Perez assisted in removing the narcotics from the cargo vessels and into the hands of drug traffickers under the direction of Rodriguez.