Heroin bust leads to cold case murder arrest

Police say the largest heroin sweep in Suffolk County history has helped crack a murder case that had gone cold.

A grand jury indictment unsealed Monday charges Gilberto "Macho" Rivera with murder in the death of Luis Maldonado. Prosecutors say Rivera, of Oakdale, shot Maldonado last summer. They say the shooting was part of a drug deal and Rivera tried to destroy evidence.

In March, Rivera was arrested in Suffolk's biggest heroin sweep. As part of that investigation, detectives were able to revive the Maldonado murder case by putting together wiretapped conversations and cell phone records.

Rivera's attorney there is no physical evidence, no confession and no scientific evidence linking his client to the crime.

Rivera is due back in court in September.

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