Sep. 26-WILKES-BARRE - An inmate jailed on felony sexual offenses was arraigned Monday on allegations he plotted to have two girls and a woman killed.
Ferdinand Cuevas-Heredia, 44, of Frothingham Street, Pittston, solicited help from other inmates at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility to hire a hit man to kill the girls and woman, according to court records.
Cuevas-Heredia made arrangements with his mother to deliver $8,000 as a down payment to pay an undercover state police trooper to kill the three females, court records say.
Court records say Cuevas-Heredia wanted the three females killed before his sexual assault trial scheduled in October.
Cuevas-Heredia was charged by Luzerne County detectives and state police with three counts of criminal solicitation to commit homicide and two counts each of criminal attempt to intimidate a witness or victim and criminal use of communication facility. He was arraigned by District Judge Thomas Malloy in Wilkes-Barre and remanded to jail without bail as he was deemed a threat to the victims and society.
According to the criminal complaint:
County detectives, Pittston police and state police learned in December 2021 Cuevas-Heredia was soliciting inmates at the county correctional facility about hiring a hit-man to kill the women he stood accused of sexually assaulting.
Cuevas-Heredia was arrested by county detectives and Pittston police in July 2021 on allegations he repeatedly raped two girls and a woman. He was further charged in October 2021 with intimidating the girls by offering them $20,000 in exchange to drop the sexual assault charges.
While Cuevas-Heredia offered cash to the victims to change their stories, he allegedly solicited inmates about hiring a hit-man to kill the girls and a woman. Cuevas-Heredia is known to the victims.
Cuevas-Heredia negotiated prices with undercover investigators, first offering $65,000, the $20,000 and $8,000 as a down payment.
In telephone conversations, Cuevas-Heredia spoke in code referring to the two girls as "Newer dents," and the woman as an "Older dent in the rear," the criminal complaint says.
Cuevas-Heredia mailed jailhouse letters listing five names including marking the three he wanted killed with an "X," giving their locations. The two girls and woman relocated outside of Pennsylvania when Cuevas-Heredia was arrested in July 2021.
Arrangements were made with Cuevas-Heredia to deliver the $8,000 down payment to an undercover trooper in a parking lot on Wilkes-Barre Township Boulevard in Wilkes-Barre Township on Sept. 16, the complaint says.
Cuevas-Heredia's mother delivered the cash.
After the transaction, Cuevas-Heredia during an interview claimed his mother had no idea as she believed she was paying a private detective to work on his cases regarding the sexual assaults.
Cuevas-Heredia sobbed during his arraignment and later claimed he was "set up" by inmates.