The Best Criminal Defense - State - Federal - International
Jose M. Quiñon, P.A.
This is the firm that take's on the serious cases. We have defended Carlos Lehder - co-founder of the Medellin Cartel, Raul Martinez - Mayor of Hialeah, Miriam Alonso - Commissioner of Miami. We have fought battles in court against impossible odds and won. The Firm record speaks for itself. We do not win every case, but we fight every single case and win many of them. If you are in trouble and need a firm that has a record of winning hard cases against all odds, you need Jose M. Quiñon, P.A.
Each case we take on demands a different approach. Our team analyzes all of the evidence the prosecution is using. We look at each piece of evidence and analyze it from all directions to find the weakness. We use a team approach to gather evidence in your defense, using forensic accountants and investigators to assist the attorney's in preparing your best case. The firm's previous cases speak for themselves.
This federal case involved a former Miami-Dade County Commission candidate indicted for bribery and money laundering in relation to a municipal bond deal. It was a highly publicized case which became widely known as the “Miami Port Case,” and was followed closely by the media. After a lengthy trial, Mr. Quinon obtained from the jury a verdict of not guilty on all counts. The same client was also separately criminally charged by the State of Florida with 42 counts of violating state campaign laws. Mr. Quinon resolved the state charges with a dismissal of all felony charges, and the client ultimately was reinstated in his government job.
Mr. Quinon led a defense team in the trial court, where the client had been indicted for 2 counts of First Degree Murder in the shooting death of two State Troopers on the Florida Turnpike, at a Deerfield Beach rest stop. After the client had served almost 17 years in prison, including more than 6 years in death row, she received the right to a new trial. By that time, one of her co-defendants had been executed by means of the electric chair. Mr. Quinon, after conducting a contentious evidentiary hearing, was able to resolve her case so that she walked out of the Broward County Jail a free woman, without any restrictions on her liberty. This case later was made into a TV movie: In the Blink of an Eye
After a two year investigation by the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office, a total of 27 individuals and companies were criminally prosecuted for RICO, RICO conspiracy, Organized Scheme to Defraud and Grand Theft in connection with a scheme to steal aviation fuel from the Miami International Airport. Out of the 27 charged, Mr. Quinon's client Mr. Berry was the only one acquitted. The jury found him not guilty of all counts after a six week trial.
Mr. Quinon obtained a verdict of not guilty on all counts from the jury in this high-profile case which was tried in the U.S. District Court for Puerto Rico. The client was charged with conspiracy to assassinate a head of state, Fidel Castro. The case was tried to a jury for a number of weeks, and received publicity in the national and international media. Fidel Castro himself referenced the trial in a speech to the Cuban nation.
Mr. Cancio, a Cuban commercial airline pilot, flew a Cuban airliner with more than 40 passengers aboard to Miami International Airport. The Cuban security guards on board the plane claimed to have been kidnapped, and the United States government threatened to bring charges for hijacking the airplane, assault, and kidnapping the passengers. Mr. Quinon led a team of lawyers that presented legal, political and policy reasons to the United States Attorney’s Office in Miami, and ultimately persuaded the prosecutors not to prosecute Mr. Cancio.
Dubbed one of the “most tortuous public corruption cases in Dade history,” Mr. Quinon tenaciously fought and won against federal prosecutors on behalf of Hialeah mayor, Raul Martinez, not once, but twice. After winning an appeal that granted the mayor a new trial following convictions for federal extortion and racketeering charges, Mr. Quinon’s first trial for the mayor resulted in a hung jury, with 11 jurors favoring acquittal. Determined to secure a conviction, federal prosecutors tried the case yet a third time. For the third trial, Mr. Quinon secured from the jury a not guilty as to one count of the counts, and deadlocked them on all others, forcing federal prosecutors to finally give up, and freeing the mayor after 6 years and 3 jury trials.
Mr. Quinon represented Armando Estrada, the lead defendant in the Miami River Cops case, the biggest police corruption scandal in South Florida history. Estrada faced a myriad of charges, including racketeering, bribery, conspiracy, robbery, drug possession, and murder. As reported in the Miami Herald, Mr. Quinon was nicknamed “El Filtro” (Spanish for “filter”) by the Government’s main witness on the stand for his ability to extract information during cross-examination. Mr. Quinon’s effective use of pretrial motions and searing cross-examinations at trial resulted in a mistrial, after 3 and ½ months in trial and testimony from more than 80 witnesses.
Prominent Miami-Dade County Commissioner Miriam Alonso was indicted by state authorities in 3 separate criminal cases, charging her with numerous counts of exploiting public office, misusing campaign funds, grand theft, and money laundering. In these highly publicized cases, Mr. Quinon filed multiple pretrial motions that took more than two years of hearings to conclude; particularly, the “taint” evidentiary hearing to determine whether evidence seized during a search warrant would be admissible at trial. More than 5 years after the arrest, State prosecutors offered to resolve the cases under terms favorable to the client, which included a term of probation.
Mr. Quinon, together with Scott Srebnick and Susan Van Dusen, represented Neil Taylor, a prominent criminal defense attorney indicted for receiving legal fees in the notorious case of Salvador Magluta, one of the most famous drug smugglers in South Florida history. The Government alleged that acceptance of the legal fees violated a judicial restraining order and also amounted to money laundering. Mr. Quinon, as lead counsel, at trial persuaded the jury to an 11-1 division in favor of not guilty – which subsequently caused the Government to desist from pursuing another trial.
United States v. Philip Nahum
In this case, Mr. Quinon represented Mr. Nahum, the family patriarch. He was indicted, together with three other family members, for illegally importing from China and distributing in the United States knockoff handbags such as Gucci, Fendi and Coach, in violation of trademark criminal laws. At the federal trial, the jury returned a verdict of not guilty as to all counts for the client and all his family members.
Mr. Quinon, together with Edward Shohat, represented Carlos Lehder in Jacksonville, Florida in a highly publicized federal trial that lasted more than 7 months. Mr. Ledher was the first major drug kingpin extradited from Colombia to the United States, and federal authorities at the time attributed more than 80% of the cocaine imported to the United States to Mr. Lehder and his associates.
Dr. Aleyda Borges was federally indicted for healthcare fraud involving Medicare, for work she did while employed at a medical clinic. The Government alleged that the case caused millions of dollars in losses to the Medicare program. After a hard fought jury trial, all charges against her were dismissed, allowing her to resume her medical practice.
Mr. Quinon successfully represented Mr. Alvarez when he was charged federally with money laundering. The jury returned a verdict of not guilty at the conclusion of a complex and lengthy trial.
United States v. Stephen Fainsbert
Mr. Quinon represented Mr. Fainsbert, a successful and respected attorney, who had drafted the documents for the creation of the Bicycle Club Casino, the most profitable casino in the United States at the time – and later the subject of Congressional hearings. Mr. Fainsbert, along with other individuals associated with BCC, was indicted and charged with RICO, RICO Conspiracy, money laundering, and other counts. After a four month trial in federal court, the jury found him not guilty on all counts. Mr. Fainsbert was the only accused who was found not guilty by the jury.
State of Florida v. Adael Castro
Mr. Quinon represented this client, who was indicted in state court for healthcare fraud relating to Medicaid services. Mr. Castro, who was chief of a municipal fire department, was found not guilty as to all charges by the jury.
This was Mr. Quinon’s first case to go to jury trial after he left the State Attorney’s Office, and it wound up in the front page of the Miami Herald. This was one of the four cases that became known as the Miami Riot Cases, which received high publicity since they involved shootings by police officers in sectors of the community that later rioted in protest. Officer Urtiaga was charged with manslaughter for shooting a suspect in the back with a shotgun, while trying to search him. A highly publicized jury trial took place, with portions of the trial appearing on television. The jury found the officer not guilty.
United States v. Ines Noriega
This was a complex case where the client was indicted in the Southern District of New York with more than 40 codefendants. Ms. Noriega was the owner of a Casa de Cambio in Maracaibo, Venezuela, who was indicted in this massive case for acting as a cash transmitter without the required license. Mr. Quinon filed a motion to transfer the case for trial from the Southern District of N.Y. to the Southern District of Florida, which was granted after multiple hearings and a thoughtful order by the District Judge in New York. After the case was transferred to Miami, Mr. Quinon persuaded the prosecutor not to further pursue the case and the indictment was dismissed by U.S. District Judge Patricia Seitz in Miami.
State of Florida v. Hector Rivera
In this case Mr. Quinon’s client was a police officer who was indicted by State authorities for committing a sexual battery. It was alleged that he did so while on duty and when serving a restraining order. After a thorough investigation brought forth reasons to question the truthfulness of the accusations made against him, the State Attorney’s Office dismissed the pending criminal charges.
State of Florida v. Freddy Gasca
Mr. Quinon successfully represented Police Officer Freddy Gasca, who was indicted for two counts of Aggravated Battery, for allegedly beating up two individuals during a police chase and subsequent arrest. Mr. Quinon persuaded the jury to find Officer Gasca not guilty on all counts.
The client was criminally charged for allowing minors to drink alcoholic beverages at his home during a high school graduation party. Two of the juveniles left the home drunk, driving at a fast pace, and hit a tree, causing one of them to die and the other one became a quadriplegic and also suffered severe brain-damage. Mr. Quinon successfully represented Mr. Valcarcel at trial. The jury found him not guilty of all charges. This case received much publicity in the community, and the verdict was televised live by one of the local television stations.
United States v. Oscar Alvarez
Mr. Quinon successfully represented Mr. Alvarez, who was federally indicted for money laundering in Texas. Mr. Alvarez was the owner of a Casa de Cambio in Hidalgo, Texas, who had a safe in the business with close to $2,000,000.00 in U.S. currency at the time of his arrest. The Government accused Mr. Alvarez of transacting business with individuals involved in the distribution of drugs. After a jury trial that lasted 11 weeks, Mr. Alvarez’s jury could not come to a unanimous decision, and he was allowed to post bond since he had been pretrial detained up to that point.
United States v. Nelson Alex Gonzalo
Mr. Quinon represented Mr. Gonzalo, who at the time was a police officer, and also worked as a realtor. Mr. Gonzalo was indicted and charged with money laundering in connection with a mortgage fraud case that exceeded $30 million in losses. After a thorough investigation, Mr. Quinon persuaded the prosecutor and investigative agency that Mr. Gonzalo was not involved in the fraud. The case was resolved by pleading to a misdemeanor of unauthorized use of a computer and a brief term of probation.
State of Florida v. Vanessa Velthius
Ms. Velthius, a University of Miami student at the time, was charged with DUI Manslaughter. This was an unusual defense in that Mr. Quinon admitted in opening statements that his client was unquestionably drunk at the time of the accident. However, during the trial, Mr. Quinon persuaded the jury that Ms. Velthius was not the driver who caused the death, and the jury returned a verdict of not guilty.
United States v. Amancio Alonso
Mr. Alonso was an entrepreneur whose business was undergoing an IRS audit. The IRS targeted him in a bribery “sting” and ultimately charged him with bribery of the auditor. Mr. Alonso’s meetings with the auditor were recorded, including his videotape delivery of $20,000 in cash to the auditor. Mr. Quinon presented a dramatic entrapment defense, highlighted by the testimony of a linguistic expert who interpreted the taped conversations for the jury. Mr. Alonso was acquitted of all counts.
State of Florida v. Hiram Horta
Mr. Quinon successfully represented Mr. Horta, who was extradited from Spain to face First Degree Murder charges in the United States. At trial, the prosecutor presented testimony of two co-defendants against Mr. Horta, and evidence his fingerprints were found in a package inside the house where the victim was found dead. Mr. Quinon obtained a verdict of not guilty for Mr. Horta, who shortly after the trial returned to live with his family in Spain.
Mr. Quinon, together with good friend, Jane Weintraub, represented famous baseball player, Jose Canseco. Mr. Canseco was facing a violation of his probation for allegedly injecting himself with steroids during his probationary period. By filing motions challenging the scientific basis for the accusation, and by working closely with a distinguished group of experts in the field, Mr. Quinon and Ms. Weintraub persuaded the State Attorney’s Office to drop all charges against Mr. Canseco.
State of Florida v. Jose Briz
This client, an engineer, was a former employee of the City of Miami, where he worked for more than 30 years. He was charged with RICO, RICO Conspiracy, Grand Theft, and other serious charges, for allegedly working with other employees during working hours on many architectural and engineering jobs not related to the City of Miami. The case received the moniker of “The Firm” by the media because the number of workers involved and the services rendered paralleled those of a private company. After investigating the facts surrounding the charges, Mr. Quinon persuaded the prosecutors to drop all charges, except for two misdemeanor offenses, which allowed the client to receive a short term of 6 months probation. Mr. Briz will continue to receive his full pension payments as a result of the favorable disposition of his case.