Wife of jailed Taneytown drug dealer seeks divorce His 14-year term is too long to wait

August 23, 1993|By Darren M. Allen | Darren M. Allen,Staff Writer

The wife of convicted Taneytown drug dealer Fernando Antonio Hernandez, one of only three people in Carroll to be charged under the state's drug kingpin law, is seeking an end to their 11-year marriage.

In divorce papers filed in Carroll Circuit Court last week, Bonnie Sharon Hernandez -- who herself was charged under the kingpin law -- says her husband's 14-year sentence leaves "no reasonable hope or expectation of a reconciliation."

She is seeking custody of the couple's three children, child support and nearly $600 to cover half of the couple's overdue state and federal taxes.

The divorce filing comes less than a year after Bonnie Hernandez testified at a sentence-reduction hearing before Carroll Circuit Judge Luke K. Burns Jr. and begged the judge to let her have her husband back.

"My concern is for the kids," she said during the September 1992 hearing, which was convened to consider Fernando Hernandez's request for a shorter sentence. "It's so unfair."

The couple's children are 3, 5 and 9 years old.

The judge has not ruled on Fernando Hernandez's sentence-reduction request.

Bonnie Hernandez's divorce filing was not unexpected, said Fernando Hernandez's attorney.

"These kinds of things are expected in situations like this," said West minster defense attorney Stephen P. Bourexis. "Fourteen years is a long time to expect her to wait. This whole case has served to destroy the family."

Robert M. Wheeler, Bonnie Hernandez's attorney, would not comment on the filing.

The couple and Fernando's brother Henry Hernandez were indicted two years ago by a county grand jury under the state kingpin law, which is used when large amounts of narcotics are involved. Prosecutors alleged that the three were major participants in a Miami-to-Carroll County cocaine ring.

None of the three was convicted as a kingpin, but all entered into plea bargains with Carroll prosecutors.

Bonnie Hernandez pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute cocaine and was placed on probation.

Henry Hernandez pleaded guilty to a similar charge and provided information to federal and state drug officials in exchange for a suspended 10-year sentence.

He was deported to his native Colombia last summer.

Fernando Hernandez, who avoided deportation in May when an immigration judge ruled that he could remain in the United States, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute cocaine and possession with the intent to distribute cocaine.

He is serving his sentence at the Roxbury Correctional Institution in Hagerstown.

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