Juan Ignacio Blanco  


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Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Robberies - "Most wanted man in Puerto Rico"
Number of victims: 1 - 9
Date of murders: 1990 - 1991
Date of arrest: February 23, 1991
Date of birth: 1969
Victim profile: Daniel Valentine, 23
Method of murder: Shooting
Location: Virgin Islands/Puerto Rico/New York, USA
Status: Sentenced to 25 years to life in prison in New York on April 7, 1992

Beniquez, Adam Jorge (1968 - )

Arrested in Brooklyn on February 23, 1991 for murder. Is also responsible for the murders of three police officers in the Caribbean and has been linked to five other killings. Convicted on four counts, including manslaughter and murder, and sentenced to 25 years to life. Entered prison on April 7, 1992.


Man Arrested in Brooklyn Tied to Killing of 3 Officers

The New York Times

February 25, 1991

A 22-year-old man arrested in Brooklyn on Saturday faces charges of killing three police officers in the Caribbean and has been linked to six other slayings, including the killing of a jewelry store manager found in a closet in Bushwick, the police said yesterday.

A detective called him the "most wanted" man in Puerto Rico. The police said the man, Adam Jorge Beniquez, was a "strong suspect" in a total of nine slayings -- three in Puerto Rico, four in the Virgin Islands and two in Brooklyn -- as well as two attempted murders in Puerto Rico.

A spokesman for the New York City police, Officer Scott Bloch, said, "We're very glad this person has been taken off the street."

Tips From Puerto Rico

When Mr. Beniquez was picked up Saturday night in a grocery store at 147 Wilson Avenue in Bushwick, he was carrying a 9-milimeter Uzi semiautomatic weapon loaded with a 30-round clip, Officer Bloch said.

Detectives in Brooklyn began looking last week for Mr. Beniquez, a native of Puerto Rico whose address in New York was not known last night, after the authorities in Puerto Rico called to say they had received tips that he was in a particular area ofBushwick. Sgt. Nick Vreeland, another police spokesman, said officers from the 83d Precinct began stakeouts there.

A police detective in Puerto Rico, Jose Rodriguez, said Mr. Beniquez had become the "most wanted man in Puerto Rico today."

Jewelry Found

The Brooklyn officers had been told about warrants for his arrest in the slaying of two police officers and the attempted murder of two other people in Puerto Rico. Then, after his arrest, the police said they discovered jewelry that led them to connect Mr. Beniquez with the killing on Saturday of Luis Medina, a 29-year-old jewelry store manager who was shot three times and whose body was found stuffed in a closet in the rear of his store at 181 Knickerbocker Avenue in Bushwick.

Then yesterday, when investigators called the police in Puerto Rico to report the arrest, they were told of five other slayings in which Mr. Beniquez was a suspect, including the killing of a police officer in the Virgin Islands for which he was wanted.

The police in New York also conducted lineups yesterday to determine if they could connect him to a second killing in Bushwick, the slaying of Daniel Valentine, a 23-year-old man who was found shot once in the chest in his apartment at 293 Troutman Street on Jan. 10. The police said Mr. Beniquez was charged with the slaying last night.

Mr. Beniquez had not been charged late yesterday in connection with the jewelry store killing as the police sorted out the tangle of warrants and reports.

Law-enforcement officials said the charges might depend on whether he was extradited to the Caribbean or tried in New York.

One official said that if the police in New York decided that they had a case likely to end with a conviction, they would press charges in New York and bring him to trial quickly.

A Second Suspect

The medical examiner's office was conducting an autopsy to determine whether the bullets that killed Mr. Medina, the jewelry store manager, matched those from the gun the police said they took from Mr. Beniquez, Officer Bloch said.

The police also arrested a second suspect Saturday in the jewelry store robbery, Carlos Madrid, 20, of 444 Suydam Avenue, who was charged with the manager's murder. The police did not know how much in jewels was taken from the store.

One of the warrants from Puerto Rico cited the slaying on Sept. 6 of Jose Bernabe Gonzalez, 33, and Pedro Sanchez Lopez, 27, two police officers who were ambushed and shot to death after chasing several suspects in a stolen car to the Rio Piedras section of San Juan.

Shooting Outside Disco

The other slaying of a police officer occurred on Jan. 27 in St. Croix. The officer, Dexter Mardenborough, 22, was struck in the head by a bullet after he went to investigate a shooting involving three men outside a discotheque.

The other killings included a man shot in Puerto Rico on Feb. 15, 1990, and three men shot in a car in St. Thomas on Nov. 15, 1990. Officer Bloch did not have details on the two attempted murders in Puerto Rico.

Sergeant Vreeland said the police had not established a clear link among all the killings and were trying to determine whether drugs or smuggling might be involved.

"He's vicious, but I don't think it's just a random thing," he said.


People v. Beniquez (N.Y.App.Div. 12/13/1999)

Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Second Department, New York

December 13, 1999


(IND. NOS. 2395/91 AND 2422/91)

Counsel: Richard L. Herzfeld, New York, N.Y., for appellant. Charles J. Hynes, District Attorney, Brooklyn, N.Y. (Roseann B. MacKechnie, Ann Bordley, and Joseph Huttler of counsel), for respondent.

Daniel W. Joy, J.P. , Gabriel M. Krausman , Howard Miller , Sandra J. Feuerstein, JJ.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Per Curiam

Argued - June 21, 1999


Appeal by the defendant from (1) a judgment of the Supreme Court, Kings County (Lipp, J.), rendered March 30, 1993, convicting him of manslaughter in the first degree under Indictment No. 2395/91, upon his plea of guilty, and sentencing him to an indeterminate term of 6 to 18 years imprisonment, and (2) a judgment of the same court (Aiello, J.), rendered June 23, 1997, convicting him of murder in the second degree, robbery in the first degree, and criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree under Indictment No. 2422/91, upon a jury verdict, and sentencing him to indeterminate terms of imprisonment of 25 years to life on his conviction of murder in the second degree, 12 1/2 to 25 years on his conviction of robbery in the first degree, and 7 1/2 to 15 years on his conviction of possession of a weapon in the second degree, to run concurrently with each other but consecutively to the sentence imposed on the conviction of manslaughter in the first degree under Indictment No. 2395/91.

ORDERED that the judgment under Indictment No. 2395/91 is affirmed; and it is further,

ORDERED that the judgment under Indictment No. 2422/91 is modified, as a matter of discretion in the interest of justice, by providing that the terms of imprisonment imposed run concurrently with the term of imprisonment imposed under Indictment No. 2395/91; as so modified, the judgment is affirmed.

The defendant's claim that the court did not conduct a sufficient inquiry of an allegedly unqualified prospective juror is unpreserved for appellate review (see, People v Fridic, 222 AD2d 220). In any event, the record fully supports the trial court's determination to dismiss the prospective juror whose comments to the court indicated that she was overly concerned with physical evidence and that she believed "word of mouth is not proof" (see, People v White, 213 AD2d 507, 508; People v Torres, 164 AD2d 923).

We find that the sentence imposed under Indictment No. 2422/91 is excessive to the extent indicated.

The defendant's remaining contentions lack merit.




MO: Career criminal; "most wanted man in Puerto Rico"

DISPOSITION: Convicted on one count of second degree murder in N.Y., 1992


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