26 indicted on heroin, cocaine charges; Two suspects sought

CLEVELAND– Federal authorities indicted 26 people for their participation in two conspiracies to bring drugs like fentanyl, heroin and cocaine into Northeast Ohio.

The FBI said 18 of the suspects were taken into custody Thursday morning. Five people turned themselves in and another was already in custody on other charges.

Victor Felix (left) and William Rodriguez (Photos courtesy: Cleveland Division of the FBI)

Two fugitives remain on the loose: Victor Felix, 39, and William Rodriguez, 40. Anyone with information on either man is asked to call law enforcement.

“These groups brought hundreds of pounds of dangerous drugs into Northeast Ohio and sold them throughout our community,” U.S. Attorney Justin E. Herdman said in a news release on Thursday. “We will continue to work collaboratively to shut off the flow of drugs and seek long prison sentences for traffickers.”

Those charged in a 29-count indictment with conspiracy to distribute fentanyl, heroin and U-47700 (a fentanyl analogue):

  • Irwin Jose Vargas, 42, of Euclid
  • Keyra Linnette Martinez, 42, of Euclid
  • Irwing Vargas Rosario, 24, of Cleveland
  • Isidoro M. Gonzalez, 41, of Cleveland
  • Alcides Garcia, 46, of Ponce, Puerto Rico
  • Austin Natale, 27, of Cleveland
  • Kayle Mae Jonela, 22, of Brook Park
  • Rosemary Howell, 55, of Cleveland
  • Dennis Mansfield, 58, of Cleveland
  • William Rodriguez, 41, of Cleveland
  • Jeffrey Mack, 44, of Cleveland
  • Victor Felix, 39, of Cleveland
  • Nelson Benitez, Jr., 34, of Cleveland
  • Thomas Lopez, 39, of Cleveland
  • Edgar Arroyo, 37, of Cleveland

Those charged in a 26-count indictment with conspiracy to distribute cocaine, N-Ethyl Pentalone (an analogue to MDMA or molly) and marijuana:

  • Emad Silmi, 43, of North Olmsted
  • Christopher Young, 46, of Westlake
  • Herbert Shaw, 44, of Cleveland
  • Samer Abu-Kwaik, 46, of Cleveland
  • Nelson Benitez, Jr., 34, of Cleveland
  • Jonathan Smith, 34, of Lathrup Village, Mich.
  • John D. Ciarlillo, 42, of Medina
  • Anthony Quinn Greenlee, 26, of Huron
  • Santana Jones, 22, of Cleveland
  • Gregory Lowery, 32, of Painesville
  • Mogahed Mustafa, 30, of North Olmsted
  • Erkan Nevzadi, 29, of Cleveland

In the first case, Vargas, Martinez and Gonzales arranged for shipments of fentanyl, heroin and cocaine from Puerto Rico, according to the indictment. Those three suspects, as well as Rosario, sold the drugs to other traffickers in the Cleveland area, court documents said.

The group used Vargas’ business, Santiago Auto Care Services on Bridge Avenue, and Gonzales’ business, Ways to Save Auto Sales on Ridge Road, as places to store the shipments. Investigators said the packages included at least a kilogram of fentanyl, a kilogram of heroin and five kilograms of cocaine.

The second case involved large amounts of cocaine and N-Ethyl Pentylone from China. Federal agents said Silmi sold it from his business, Global Auto Body and Collision on West 130th Street. Greenlee distributed and stored drugs from U.S. Motor Sales on Brookpark Road.

According to the indictment, Greenlee and Nevzadi used firearms, ammunition and other weapons to protect their drug trafficking activities. Silmi is also charged with conspiracy to launder money as part of an effort to hide his drug profits.