News Flash • Uniondale man sentenced to 12 years in prison

Orlando Ramsay pleaded guilty in May to 23 charges, including being a serious drug trafficker, in the context of the investigation into the drug ring “Operation Honeycomb”

MINEOLA, NY – Nassau County District Attorney Anne T. Donnelly announced that a Uniondale man was sentenced today to 12 years in prison for his role in a major drug trafficking ring that operated in the Hempstead area.

Orlando Ramsay, 49, pleaded guilty on May 21, 2024, before Judge Teresa Corrigan to aggravated trafficking in drugs (a Class AI felony); three counts of first-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance (a Class AI felony); second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance (a Class A-II felony); seven counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance (a Class B felony); second-degree conspiracy (a Class B felony); three counts of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon (a Class C violent felony); three counts of third-degree criminal possession of a weapon (a Class D felony); three counts of criminal possession of a weapon (a Class E felony); and possession of drug paraphernalia (a Class A misdemeanor).

The defendant was sentenced today to twelve years in prison and five years probation.

“Orlando Ramsay was a major dealer in a Hempstead drug ring that supplied dangerous opioids and other drugs to smaller dealers throughout Nassau County and promoted violence in and around Hempstead. The defendant was arrested in possession of drugs with a street value of over $500,000, including one kilogram of heroin,” said DA Donnelly. “This defendant is one of the last to be convicted as part of a multi-partner operation that resulted in the indictment of 40 individuals, including several major Hempstead dealers. I thank our many law enforcement partners for their work in dismantling this dangerous gang and making our communities safer.”

Prosecutor Donnelly said the defendant was stopped on October 17, 2020, with approximately 350 grams of cocaine in his vehicle as he was on his way to deliver the drugs to a co-defendant.

A search warrant executed on October 18, 2020 at the defendant’s residence revealed:

  • Approximately 1500 grams of cocaine (1.5 kilograms)
  • About 1 kilogram of heroin
  • 200 grams of morphine
  • 12 grams of fentanyl
  • Four firearms, including three loaded handguns and a shotgun
  • $185,000 in cash
  • Various drug paraphernalia

In total, the street value of the drugs seized under the search warrant was estimated at approximately $500,000.

In October 2019, the NCDA, the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Long Island Gang Task Force, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Long Island Field Division began investigating an increase in violence and drug trafficking in the Hempstead area. Following several drug and gun buys, the NCDA requested electronic wiretap warrants in February 2020 to identify major drug dealers in the Hempstead area.

Ramsay was one of several defendants identified during the investigation as wholesalers. To be a wholesaler, the total value of narcotics possessed or sold by the dealer must exceed $75,000 in any six-month period.

These individuals allegedly acted as primary suppliers for numerous smaller dealers in Nassau County and worked together to obtain and distribute narcotics such as heroin, fentanyl and cocaine.

Prosecutors allege the drugs were smuggled from as far away as Puerto Rico, California, Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Connecticut.

The investigation was dubbed Operation Honeycomb because a large quantity of drugs were packaged and stored in the home of one defendant. Co-defendants frequently referred to the house as “the honeycomb” in wiretapped phone conversations.

When the COVID-19 pandemic broke out in March 2020, the cost of cocaine began to fluctuate wildly as demand far exceeded supply.

Cocaine prices rose from around $32,000 per kilogram to a peak of $55,000 per kilogram in August 2020, leading to a rapid rise in street prices to as high as $125 per gram.

Due to drug shortages during the pandemic, dealers began mixing fentanyl with cocaine and heroin to increase the potency of their shipments while using less cocaine.

Ramsay was arrested by members of the Nassau County Police Department on October 17, 2020.

The NCDA thanks our partners at the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Long Island Gang Task Force, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Long Island Field Division, the Nassau County Police Department, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the New York State Police, and the Drug Enforcement Administration. The Task Force includes members of the FBI, New York State Police, Nassau County Police, Suffolk County Police, Hempstead Police, and Rockville Centre Police Departments, as well as the Nassau County and Suffolk County Sheriff’s Departments.

Assistant Chief of the Organized Crime and Gangster Bureau Patrick Brand is prosecuting this case under the supervision of Chief of the Drug, Firearms and Gang Crimes Bureau Nicholas Mauro and under the overall supervision of Assistant District Attorney of the Investigative Division Rick Whelan. Ramsay is represented by Brian Carmody, Esq.