BOSTON — A member of the Latin Kings street gang pleaded guilty today to distributing drugs in New Bedford.

30-year-old Virgilio Adorno, AKA “Trigga," AKA “Goyo,” of New Bedford, pleaded guilty to one count of distribution of cocaine base, also known as crack cocaine. U.S. District Court Judge Allison D. Burroughs scheduled sentencing for Nov. 2, 2017.

In March 2017, federal authorities charged Adorno along with Rafael Reyes, Jonathan Garcia, and Avimael Ortiz in a series of cases brought following a long-term investigation into drug trafficking in the New Bedford area. Among other things, the investigation revealed that the Bonneau Court area of New Bedford had been overwhelmed by drug dealing and violent crime.

Latin Kings gang members and associates were observed regularly using a section of Bonneau Court known as “The Pit” as a site for drug trafficking and other illegal activity.

As part of the investigation, Adorno was caught selling crack cocaine to a cooperating witness in the Bonneau Court area. A subsequent search warrant executed at Adorno’s residence resulted in the seizure of additional crack cocaine.

Garcia and Ortiz previously pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing. Reyes has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial. He is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

The charge of distribution of cocaine base provides for a sentence of no greater than 20 years in prison, a minimum of three years and up to a lifetime of supervised release, and a fine of up to $1 million. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

--U.S. Attorney's Office