BANGOR, Maine — Two New York City men pleaded not guilty Wednesday in U.S. District Court to drug charges stemming from a raid in November on neighboring apartment buildings on Ohio Street and a Garland Street residence.
Luis “Animal” Gonzalez, 27, of Reading, Pa., and Dawlin “Boss Man” Cabrera, also known as Rolando Andujar, 29, entered not guilty pleas to conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute 28 grams (an ounce) or more of cocaine base, also called crack cocaine.
Cabrera also pleaded not guilty to possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.
The two were arrested along with Jowenky “Bullet” Nunez, 29, of New York City on Feb. 2 in New York. Nunez is scheduled to be arraigned on March 1 in federal court in Bangor. He is facing the same counts as Cabrera.
All three are being held without bail.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Margaret Kravchuk on Wednesday tentatively set April 3 as the date for a trial for all defendants in the case.
The arrests of the New York men brings to nine the number of defendants facing federal drug charges in connection with a crack cocaine ring that allegedly operated out of apartments at 100 and 102 Ohio St. and another apartment on Garland Street.
At least a dozen people have been charged in state court in Penobscot County in connection with the drug operation.
The distribution ring allegedly operated from September 2010 through October 2011. Investigators recovered 371 grams, or nearly 13 ounces, of crack cocaine, according to court documents.
Defendants allegedly sold baggies of crack cocaine in bundles of 10 and 20. Each baggie contained 0.40 grams, or 0.014 ounces, of crack cocaine, according to court documents. A “10 pack” sold for $375.
Investigators also have surveillance photographs of defendants depositing a total of $141,610 in cash at an ATM on Exchange Street in Bangor, according to the affidavit.
The following people also have been indicted by a federal grand jury on drug conspiracy charges:
• Manuel “Fish” Trinidad-Acosta, 27, of New York City.
• Abraham Lluberas, 21, of New York City.
• Ed Cogswell, 46, of Bangor.
• Pauline Rossignol, 52, of Brewer.
• Jacob “Pinky” Garcia, 21, of New York City.
• Kelvin Mally, 18, of New York City.
In addition to the drug charges, Trinidad-Acosta and Mally were indicted on additional charges of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.
All but Mally have been arrested and pleaded not guilty.
Garcia and Trinidad-Acosta are being held without bail. Cogswell and Lluberas have been released on $10,000 unsecured bail. Rossignol has been released on personal recognizance bail.
If convicted of the drug charge, all nine defendants face a minimum of five years and a maximum of 40 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $2 million. Trinidad-Acosta, Cabrera, Nunez and Mally each face an additional mandatory minimum sentence of five years on the gun charges.