Three fugitives sought in drug indictment

MILWAUKEE COUNTY — U.S. Marshals and the F.B.I. are searching for three fugitives tied to a drug indictment. Law enforcement officials say they’ve moved more than $60,000 in dope across Milwaukee – drug trafficking that turned deadly for at least two customers.

Ricardo Zapata is 41 years old and also goes by the name “Richie.” Antonio Ramirez is 40 years old, and Orlando Hernandez is 26 years old and uses the street name “Gordo.” Law enforcement officials say all three are connected to the Spanish Cobras street gang – a network accused of selling heroin.

FBI Special Agent Robert Botsch says the group wanted to dominate and control the distribution of dope. Botsch says over the course of a two-year investigation, 36 people were indicted with investigators determining Zapata was a major link in the drug chain. Botsch says Hernandez is a heroin distributor and was one of the underlings that sold for the organization. Botsch says Ramirez wasn’t at the top of the organization by any means, but was one of the ones slinging heroin in the streets.

Botsch says the narcotics network was responsible for at least a kilogram of heroin, and the group played a roll in the overdose deaths of at least two people. “It shows the impact this drug can have on the casual user,” Botsch said.

Law enforcement officials say all three of these individuals could be on the south side of Milwaukee.

If you’ve got information on this case, U.S. Marshals want to hear from you. Their number is 414-297-3707.

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