Public Notices and Press Releases

Burlington County Man Sentenced to 20 Years for Major Heroin Trafficking Operation

A Burlington County man received a 245-month prison sentence for his involvement in a major heroin trafficking conspiracy that operated in Trenton and nearby areas, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.

NEW JERSEY - Jerome Roberts, known as “Righteous,” 53, was sentenced on June 13, 2024, by U.S. District Judge Georgette Castner. Roberts was convicted in October 2021 of conspiracy to distribute over one kilogram of heroin and distributing more than 100 grams of heroin after a three-week trial before former then-Chief U.S. District Judge Freda L. Wolfson.

From October 2017 to October 2018, Roberts and others were part of a significant narcotics conspiracy operating in various areas of Trenton, including Martin Luther King Boulevard, Sanford Street, Middle Rose Street, Southard Street, Hoffman Avenue, and Coolidge Avenue. This conspiracy aimed to profit from distributing heroin and numerous other controlled substances. Roberts, along with his conspirator Jakir Taylor, obtained regular supplies of hundreds of “bricks” of heroin from David Antonio, known as “Papi.”

Court-authorized wiretaps intercepted communications revealing that Taylor and Roberts planned to acquire a substantial amount of heroin from Antonio, which Roberts referred to as the “motherlode.” This supply, amounting to approximately 1,500 bricks (or 1.5 kilograms), was intended to "flood the streets" of Trenton. Antonio was recorded saying, “as long . . . as I keep it flowing, we never gonna stop.”

Evidence from law enforcement surveillance, intercepted communications, and other physical evidence showed that on August 10, 2018, Roberts obtained a supply of 200 bricks of heroin from Antonio, which he redistributed to Taylor and others. During coordinated arrests on October 25, 2018, law enforcement apprehended Roberts, Taylor, Antonio, and other defendants, recovering more than 1.4 kilograms of heroin from Antonio’s residence.

David Antonio pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 204 months in prison in March 2020. Jakir Taylor also pleaded guilty and received a 228-month prison sentence in January 2023.

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