Target 12 on

Suspect in Operation Triple Play case cuts a plea deal


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – One of the 16 suspects arrested earlier this year during the federal investigation dubbed “Operation Triple Play” has agreed to plead guilty, the Target 12 Investigators have learned.

Jafar Munir, of Smithfield, signed a plea agreement for one count of conspiracy to distribute heroin and cocaine for his alleged role in what investigators called a sophisticated, multi-state drug ring, bringing the drugs into the U.S. from Mexico.

The plea deal does not indicate whether or not Munir will testify against the 15 other suspects.

Three brothers – Juan, Hector and Claudio Valdez – ran the operation, and according to the U.S. Attorney for the District of Rhode Island, the trio and six other suspects were in the U.S. illegally. Juan Valdez had been deported four times, and the nine Dominican nationals now have immigration detainers against them.

The investigation began in Sept. 2016, with state and federal officers seizing 4 kilograms of heroin, 1.5 kilograms of fentanyl, 2 kilograms of cocaine and 155 grams of crack cocaine, a total of about 17 pounds of drugs. The street value of the seized drugs was nearly $700,000 and investigators said it was only a small amount of what the operation potentially dealt before the probe began.

Munir, who is a U.S. citizen, was said to be a low-level dealer whom investigators recorded having several phone conversations with the Valdez brothers, who nicknamed him “Gringo” since he spoke only English.

According to a search warrant affidavit, Munir was heard ordering packages of “white” for cocaine and “brown” for heroin, which Munir would later allegedly resell in smaller doses.

The surveillance referenced in the affidavit took place at a number of Providence addresses, and there are no indications where Munir allegedly sold the drugs he bought.

In exchange for a guilty plea the government will recommend a reduction in Munir’s offense level, which could lighten the sentence he’ll receive. The maximum sentence for cocaine and heroin distribution is 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine.

During Operation Triple Play, investigators seized $95,000 in cash and nine vehicles – five of which had hidden compartments that were allegedly used for transporting drugs and money.

The affidavit said there were stash houses in Cranston and Woonsocket and that the drug ring distributed to dealers such as Munir in the greater Providence, Boston and Hartford areas.

Send tips to Target 12 Investigator Walt Buteau at and follow him on Twitter @wbuteau

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


Download Mobile Apps from WPRI 12
DOWNLOAD APPS NOW: Apple App Store | Google Play Store

12 on 12 - Cold Case Cards: All In

More Cold Case Cards All In
Watch 12 on 12: The Mafia Tapes - Only on

Veteran's Voices: Honoring Those Who Serve

More Veterans Voices

Dan Yorke State of Mind: Dan's Daily Update

DYSOM 10/22/2020: Sarah Bratko

More Dan Yorke State of Mind

Don't Miss

Viewer Pa on


More Live Cams

Community Events & Happenings

More Community

The Border Report Tour

More Border Report Tour