Pinellas County Sheriff’s Narcotics detectives say Pedro Maisonet-Gonzalez of Pinellas Park is the leader of an operation distributing cocaine and heroin in Pinellas County.
Fourteen suspects were arrested in July and August in connection with an investigation into distribution of cocaine and heroin in Pinellas County.
The multi-jurisdictional investigation, dubbed “Operation White Pony,” began in late April, according to a report from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office released Aug. 4.
Ten suspects were arrested in Pinellas County, two in Hillsborough County, one in Arizona and one in Puerto Rico. Detectives said the suspects had been distributing cocaine and heroin throughout various areas of Pinellas County.
The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force and the Drug Enforcement Administration Tampa District Office initiated “Operation White Pony” in late April to investigate a drug trafficking organization that was responsible for distributing various amounts of cocaine and heroin through Pinellas County each month.
Detectives were able to identify lower tier members of the organization, including Ebenezer Jimenez, 32, of Seminole. Undercover operatives purchased both cocaine and heroin from Jimenez throughout the investigation, which in turn, led them to identify Pedro Maisonet-Gonzalez, 40, of Pinellas Park as the leader of the organization in Pinellas County. He was operating in partnership with his girlfriend 34-year-old Isabel Jasso, 34, also of Pinellas Park.
According to detectives, Maisonet-Gonzales made monthly trips to Puerto Rico to purchase cocaine and ship it to Pinellas County through the U.S. Postal Service. Maisonet-Gonzales also purchased handguns in Florida and shipped them illegally to Puerto Rico to be sold to help fund his narcotics business. Detectives said that Maisonet-Gonzales distributed narcotics through Jimenez to various adult entertainment establishments within the county.
Jorge Lopez-Abril, 43, of Pinellas Park, Jorge Perez-Diaz, 36, of Puerto Rico and Mike Chavez-Zazueta, 40, of Tucson, Arizona were identified by detectives as alternate suppliers of the heroin and cocaine.
Search warrants were served at three locations that were being used by Maisonet-Gonazalez to conceal evidence of his drug trafficking organization and distribution network. During the arrests, almost $90,000 in cash was seized along with 14 handguns.
Additional arrests were made of individual members within the organization connected to the distribution of the heroin and cocaine, including Maribel Diaz-Ortiz, 54, of Tampa, Carlos Collazo, 47, of Tampa, Richard Hammons, 32, of St. Petersburg, Jamie Manz, 36, of Clearwater, Luis Salcedo, 28, of St. Petersburg, Anthony Ray Anderson, 54, of St. Petersburg, Lissette Medina, 32, of Seminole, and Miguel Ramos, 48, of Largo.
“These arrests are the result of the hard work and great effort made by Pinellas County Sheriff’s Narcotics detectives and the Drug Enforcement Administration. The State Attorney for the 6th Judicial Circuit provided instrumental support to take down a significant operation here in the Tampa Bay area,” said Sheriff Bob Gualtieri during the Aug. 4 press conference.