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Accused 'Ringleader' of Inwood Group That Allegedly Sold Firearms, Drugs Pleads Guilty

By Carla Zanoni | August 5, 2010 4:08pm

By Shayna Jacobs

DNAinfo Reporter/Producer

MANHATTAN SUPREME COURT — The accused "ringleader" of a group that sold firearms and drugs steps away from an Inwood elementary school pleaded guilty on Thursday to various gun charges.

Marcel Navarro, 22, pleaded guilty to first-degree criminal sale of a firearm, first-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon in exchange for a 14-year sentence, down from the sentence of at least 50 years in prison his lawyer said he could have faced if he was found guilty after a trial.

Navarro sold firearms to an undercover police officer during a 10 month investigation, prosecutors said. He also admitted he and others distributed semi-automatic weapons, revolvers, assault weapons, cocaine and ecstasy throughout 2009 out of his apartment at 509 W. 212th St., across the street from P.S. 98, according to prosecutors.

Navarro and six co-defendants were indicted in December on charges they sold $27,500 of firearms, according to the Manhattan District Attorney's office.

They also sold ammunition and $16,480 worth of drugs to an undercover officer, prosecutors said.

Navarro's alleged accomplices, Christopher Navarro, 25, Emmanuel Felix, 24, and Michael Berrios, 22, have already pleaded guilty. Charges against three other co-defendants are pending. 

"It's a sad case," said Navarro's lawyer, Glenn Garber. "I think Marcel was very troubled."

Navarro's sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 15.