JammedUp News

News

Fox Business producer, Chipotle exec, banker among 18 charged in NYC cocaine bust

June 30, 2016  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Fox Business producer, Chipotle exec,  banker among 18 charged in NYC cocaine bust Katie Welnhofer, 29, was led into Manhattan Criminal Court on Thursday morning in a jumpsuit with handcuffs and with her hair pulled back

Are you in a legal jam? Find a Lawyer, Bail Bondsman or Private Investigator on JammedUp.

A producer with the Fox Business Channel, a Chipotle executive, and a Merril Lynch investment banker are among 18 people authorities busted in a massive crackdown on cocaine buyers in New York City, the Daily Mail reported.

Prosecutors said 29-year-old Katie Welnhofer, a producer for the Fox Business Channel’s ‘Mornings with Maria,’ along with Mark Crumpacker, the Chief Creative Development Officer of Chipotle and Merrill Lynch banker Mark Dodson were among 18 alleged white collar coke heads under indictment after the operation.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said all 18 suspects were arraigned in Manhattan Criminal Court on Thursday morning.

Vance said the charges stemmed from an investigation targeting three members of a major cocaine trafficking network that used CVS, Duane Reade’s, delis and other legitimate places of business on the Lower East Side of Manhattan over the past year to conduct cocaine deals.

Katie Welnhofer, 29, was led into Manhattan Criminal Court on Thursday morning in a jumpsuit with handcuffs and with her hair pulled back

Katie Welnhofer, 29, was led into Manhattan Criminal Court on Thursday morning in a jumpsuit with handcuffs and with her hair pulled back

Police said the drug ring often charged the high-end customers $200 to $300 per purchase, which is double what high-quality cocaine would cost on the street.

Officials said the investigation began after 29-year-old investment banker Thomas Hughes, jumped from the roof of his building at 1 West St. in Lower Manhattan and killed himself back in May 2015.

Investigators discovered cocaine during a subsequent search of his apartment along with his dealer’s number on his cell phone.

The three drug dealers accused in the indictment include 35-year-old alleged kingpin Kenny “Jay” Hernandez, along with his cohorts, Oscar Almonte, 29, and 27-year-old Felix “Jake” Nunez.

According to the New York Daily News, Welnhofer was led into the court shackled wearing a tan prison jumpsuit and order held on $15,000 bail. Crumpacker has agreed to surrender within the next couple of days.

Welnhofer is a native of Wilmette, Illinois who previously worked for One World Sports, Good Morning America, and Inside Edition before joining the Fox Business Channel.

Mark Crumpacker, Chipotle's Chief Creative and Development Officer, has also been indicted

Mark Crumpacker, Chipotle’s Chief Creative and Development Officer, has also been indicted

Local news affiliates reported she even attended the lavish wedding of Eric Trump and Lara Yunaska back in 2014. Crumpacker has worked as the first Chief Marketing Officer for the fast food chain since 2009, according to his LinkedIn page.

Crumpacker oversees advertising, design, events, social media, research and public relations for Chipotle. He also is the head of real estate, design, construction, and facilities functions worldwide for the company.

He previously was the founder, CEO and Creative Director at Sequence, a San Francisco-based branding and interactive agency before joining Chipotle.

A judge ordered Dodson, who works as a client associate at Merrill Lynch, accused of buying $7,600 in cocaine,  held on $30,000 bond.

Vance said the three defendants were “key repeat customers” of the drug ring, which he described as “a high-end, on-demand service.”

Get the latest news from the world of crime