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  1. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI)
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  3. Florida Couple Charged With Firearm, Drug Offenses; 4 Men Charged with Carjacking, Kidnapping Resulting in Death in Related Cases

Florida Couple Charged With Firearm, Drug Offenses; 4 Men Charged with Carjacking, Kidnapping Resulting in Death in Related Cases

Release Date: June 10, 2024

ORLANDO, Fla. — A Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Orlando investigation has led a grand jury to return with indictments charging an Orlando couple with possession with intent to distribute controlled substances and use of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.

A separate grand jury has also returned with indictments charging four Orlando men with carjacking resulting in death, kidnapping resulting in death and use of a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence causing death in related cases.

If convicted on all counts, Giovany Joel Crespo Hernandez, 27, faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison. Monicasabel Romero Soto, 28, of Orlando, faces a minimum mandatory penalty of five to 40 years in federal prison. The indictment also notifies Crespo Hernandez and Romero Soto that the U.S. intends to forfeit the firearms and ammunition alleged to have facilitated the offenses.

According to the indictment, on April 17, Crespo Hernandez and Romero Soto possessed with intent to distribute fentanyl and possessed a firearm in furtherance of that drug offense. On April 17, Romero Soto possessed with intent of distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine.

According to a separate grand jury indictment on April 11, Crespo Hernandez faces minimum mandatory life in prison or the death penalty for aiding and abetting three Orlando men and others to carjack and kidnap a person who later died. While committing the carjacking, the four men aided and abetted each other in the use of a firearm during and in relation to the carjacking, causing the person’s death. Jordanish Torres Garcia, 28; Kevin Ocasio Justiniano, 27; Crespo Hernandez; and Dereck Alexis Rodriguez Bonilla 21, all of Orlando, face mandatory life imprisonment or the death penalty if they are convicted on all counts.

An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

The cases were investigated by HSI Orlando, the FBI and the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office with assistance from the Apopka Police Department, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the St. Cloud Police Department, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office and the U.S. Marshals Service. U.S. Attorney Roger B. Handberg announced the return by a grand jury of an indictment, and it will be prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Stephanie McNeff and Dana Hill.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: Fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

Last Updated: 06/10/2024
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