A 35-year-old Alexandria man described by a federal prosecutor as a major courier who brought in large quantities of cocaine from Venezuela was ordered held without bond yesterday after his arrest in connection with a routine undercover drug purchase.
Angel Maguens of 309 Yoakum Parkway, who was arrested April 1 in Northwest Washington on a charge of cocaine possession with intent to distribute, is also wanted in Venezuela on a narcotics trafficking charge, Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert McDaniel told U.S. Magistrate Patrick Attridge.
He said Maguens was carrying a bogus passport when he was arrested and has been convicted twice of passport violations.
According to law enforcement sources, Maguens, who was been unemployed for the last year, has traveled out of the United States as often as once a month since 1975 and has been the subject of a longtime investigation.
But, sources said, his arrest surprised prosecutors and Drug Enforcement Administration agents who had set up what was considered a routine cocaine purchase.
DEA agent Emile Manara testified that he went to an apartment at 1527 O St. NW to buy eight ounces of cocaine from another man. Manara said that soon after he arrived at the apartment he took the man to his car to show him the $15,000 with which he was to pay for the drug.
The two men then returned the apartment. A short time later, Manara said, there was a tap at the window of the apartment and the man said, "There it is, that's the delivery."
The man went outside and returned a few minutes later with a plastic package containing white powder, the agent said. He and the man then went to his car, and as they reached the vehicle, Manara said, he signaled for backup and surveillance agents to make the arrest. The man began to run and threw the package toward him, Manara said.
Rolando Raphael Otero, 32, of the O Street address, was arrested about 45 feet away, Manara said. He was charged with cocaine distribution.
Manara said Maguens was the man who had tapped at the window and that Maguens also ran from the scene. He was arrested at 16th and O streets NW after he was seen discarding a package, which later field-tested positive for cocaine, the agent said.