Somerset Man, Two Others, Arrested With Eight Kilograms Of Cocaine

A 30-year-old Somerset man was among three people arrested on charges that they conspired to distribute multi-kilograms of cocaine in and around New Brunswick.

Yunior Martinez-Jimenez of Somerset, Palemon Silvestre Sierra, 41 and Indhira de los Santos Padilla, 33, both of New Brunswick, appeared in federal court in Newark on June 28 to face the charges against them. They were arrested June 27 in New Brunswick, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

The three are each charged with one count of conspiracy to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine, according to the press release.

According to the complaint, an ongoing investigation by law enforcement revealed that Martinez-Jimenez was selling multiple kilos of cocaine in and around New Brunswick. In a conversation recorded on June 15, Martinez-Jimenez allegedly offered to sell someone “multiple kilograms of cocaine,” the complaint said.

Martinez-Jimenez agreed to meet the buyer and another person in New Brunswick on June 27 to sell them about two kilos of cocaine, according to the complaint. Martinez-Jimenez and Padilla drove to the meeting, which was held in front of a Remsen Avenue home, according to the complaint.

Martinez-Jimenez asked the buyer to follow him to another location in New Brunswick to pick up the drugs, the complaint said, but the buyer refused. Martinez-Jimenez and Padilla then drove to a Redmond Street home. Their trip was observed by a “law enforcement aerial unit,” according to the complaint.

Once at Redmond Street, Sierra left a house, retrieved an empty bag from the car in which Martinez-Jimenez and Padilla were traveling, and then returned to the home, according to the complaint. Several minutes later, Sierra was seen by law enforcement leaving the house with the bag, which now appeared heavier, and bring it back to Martinez-Jimenez and Padilla, the complaint said.

Martinez-Jimenez and Padilla were then seen by the police aerial unit driving back to the Remsen Avenue house, according to the complaint, where Padilla met the buyer and the second person at their car and handed the bag to them through a passenger-side window.

Police, who were conducting surveillance on the area, then converged on both cars. Martinez-Jimenez tried to escape, according to the complaint, but was stopped a short distance away.

Martinez-Jimenez and Padilla were then arrested, according to the complaint.

Two packages in the car contained about two kilos of cocaine, which was field-tested, according to the complaint.

An undercover officer then accompanied Martinez-Jimenez back to Sierra at the Redmond Street home, where Martinez-Jimenez gave him the cash from the transaction, after which Sierra was arrested, according to the complaint.

The buyer and the buyer’s friend were not identified in the complaint.

A search of the Redmond Street home turned up another six kilos of cocaine, according to the complaint.

Sierra admitted that the cocaine was his, the complaint said. Martinez-Jimenez also admitted that he had picked up drugs from the Redmond Street home on other occasions and brought the proceeds of the sales back to the Redmond Street home, according to the complaint.

The possession with intent to distribute charge carries a minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum potential penalty of life in prison and a $10 million fine, according to the press release.


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