It took 17 years to find him, but Florida officials recently arrested a man they claim conspired to bring drugs into our state. The man surrendered to authorities in Fort Lauderdale after allegedly spending the nearly two decades on the run. He will now face drug trafficking charges that include bringing heroin and cocaine into the state.
Though it may mean that the 79-year-old will spend the rest of his life in jail, the man decided to surrender in Florida because he missed his family, authorities report. The man will now face charges of drug trafficking brought against him in the mid-1990s for drug trafficking and other crimes. He is accused of being a member of an organized crime ring. Other members of the alleged mob were convicted and sentenced to prison long ago.
Though the man decided to run rather than face the charges against him, as of this date he has not been convicted of any crime. Authorities suspect that he, along with the other mob members, were running a drug smuggling and distribution operation out of a restaurant in the Hollywood area. The operation was also the subject of a federal undercover investigation.
The individual chose to turn himself into authorities rather than spend the remainder of his life on the run. Though he will now face the drug trafficking accusations against him, he continues to have the same rights to a defense that he had when first indicted. Those rights include the ability to question all evidence against him, even though it is now decades old.
Source: Sun Sentinel, “Paul Sanzaro: Hollywood mob suspect turns himself in after 17 years on the run,” Paula Mcmahon, Sept. 2, 2012