Michael Mendez, 42-year-old, a Latin King gang member, who was arrested in summer, during a raid conducted by the New Jersey State Police, appeared before the superior court in Paterson and pleaded guilty to a charges of drug possession and a charge of criminal restraint.
When troopers entered the house they discovered a typical cache of drugs ready for distribution, and something else, more bizarre: a woman padlocked in an apartment. That woman, Nancy Rodriguez, who is also the female companion of the gang leader, asserts that she was not held against her will, locked inside the apartment building, but that she voluntarily agreed to it because she feared for her safety.
“During the search of the house, detectives seized approximately 150 prescription anti-anxiety and pain pills for which he had no prescription (alprazolam and hydrocodone), nearly 7 ounces of marijuana, and more than $22,000 in cash,” according to the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office.
Under a plea agreement Mr Mendez will face five years in state prison without parole for 18 months. Greta Gooden Brown, the judge in the case, has set sentencing date for March 28th, 2013.