Prospect Park South

Daylight arms deals in Prospect Park South: Brooklyn man sentenced to a decade behind bars for arms and drugs trafficking

February 27, 2024 Robert Abruzzese, Courthouse Editor
NYPD undercover officers were able to recover 17 firearms during mostly daylight sales.Photos courtesy of Eastern District
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A mugshot of Ronald D. Delaespada from his 2015 arrest.
A mugshot of Ronald D. Delaespada from his 2015 arrest.

A 48-year-old from Brooklyn, Ronald Delaespada, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for trafficking firearms and narcotics on Friday, including the sale of at least 17 firearms to an undercover NYPD officer in the Prospect Park South area.

The firearms included semi-automatic assault rifles, a KelTec KS7 shotgun, and an American Tactical AR-15-style rifle with a high-capacity magazine. The sales took place in vehicles near homes, a church, and an elementary school, often during the afternoon.

“Delaespada is a career criminal who sold illegal guns, including an assault-type rifle, near a school, a church and on bustling streets in the heart of Brooklyn, without regard for how these lethal weapons could be used,” U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District Breon Peace said. “Today’s sentence will keep the defendant off the street for years, a punishment he deserves for his blatant disrespect for the law and his dangerous conduct.”

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Delaespada, with a prior felony conviction for narcotics trafficking and possessing a firearm as a felon, was on federal supervised release at the time of these offenses. At his arrest, authorities found him with over 80 fentanyl pills, 38 grams of a heroin/fentanyl mix, and significant quantities of cocaine and crack cocaine. 

Co-defendants Rayon Lovett and Owen Welch also pleaded guilty to firearms trafficking charges, with Lovett sentenced to 85 months in prison and Welch awaiting sentencing.

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