An NYPD officer was convicted on drug trafficking charges in a federal court Thursday, a year after she was busted selling kilos of heroin, fentanyl and cocaine out of her Bronx apartment last year.
Yessenia Jiminez, 32, along with her boyfriend, Luis Soto, were arrested after being met by DEA agents after returning home from a trip to Massachusetts to meet a heroin trafficker in March 2018. At the time, Jiminez was holding a purse with her NYPD-issue Glock 9-mm. hanging out, and $25,000 in cash.
She claimed to be "on the job" at the time -- but that argument didn't fly with a jury. She was convicted after a one-week trial in a Manhattan federal court.
“Simply put, Jimenez was a drug dealer in a cop’s uniform,” U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman said, according to the New York Daily News.
Jiminez joined the force in 2015, and was assigned to patrol city housing developments in the Bronx. It is believed that she and her boyfriend, Soto, were trafficking a medley of drugs across the U.S. border from Mexico to sell out of her apartment to individuals in New York and Boston. When police raided her apartment, they found "hundreds of thousands of dollars in drug profits," as well as 250 grams of heroin and fentanyl, according to a Justice Department press release.
Authorities first became suspicious of her in January 2018 when her boyfriend's phone number came up in connection with a suspected heroin dealer from Queens in New York. Jiminez's boyfriend, Soto, as well as four other members of the operation, eventually pleaded guilty to the charges against them.
Jiminez was originally charged with drug trafficking and weapons possession, the latter of which her lawyer, Mark Gombiner, contested.
“This is her service weapon,” he said at the time. “Given that she’s a police officer she’s kind of mandated [to have] her service weapon with her.”
On Thursday, however, she was found guilty of conspiring to distribute heroin, fentanyl and cocaine, possession of heroin and fentanyl and using a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.
She faces a mandatory 10-year prison sentence for the conspiracy to distribute cocaine, heroin and fentanyl, and could face up to life in prison.