LEHIGH ACRES, Fla. - A fugitive arrested Tuesday in Lehigh Acres has ties to a high-profile drug investigation in New York City. That case involves Kristin Davis, a woman formerly known as the "Manhattan Madam" who's now running for office.
36-year-old Erik Pichardo was arrested on Karen Avenue South in Lehigh on an FBI warrant out of New York. He remains in the Lee County Jail. Pichardo's name surfaced in the complaint against Davis.
Before joining the Comptroller, Davis was known as the "Manhattan Madam," running a large prostitution ring that served high-profile clients. Now, she's at the center of a federal drug investigation.
Between January and April, the FBI says Davis sold hundreds of prescription pills for cash, including Oxycodone, Vicodin and Amphetamine. If convicted, Davis could spend up to 80 years in prison.
But now, Southwest Florida is embroiled in the story. The FBI finally caught up with Erik Pichardo, not in New York but in Lehigh Acres. He is now charged with distributing Oxycodone.
Pichardo was arrested at a home on Karen Avenue South. While the woman who lives there declined an on-camera interview, she said he was only staying there for a few days to visit his kids.
She said Pichardo wasn't in hiding and actually planned to turn himself in peacefully. She's unsure of how exactly he and Davis are connected.
While Pichardo currently lives in New York, we found he has a history of Lee County arrests dating back to 2007 including Illegal Drug Trafficking and Possession of Narcotics .
FBI Assistant Director in Charge George Venizelos said, "the FBI and our partners in law enforcement remain committed to investigate and bring to justice those individuals who illegally distribute prescription medicines for their own financial gain."
This isn't the first time authorities have combed this part of Lehigh Acres looking for a fugitive. Last August U.S. Marshals and deputies surrounded a home on 55th Street Southwest, just a few miles down the road from where Pichardo was arrested. Investigators were looking for Felipe Torrealba who was wanted in connection with a murder and police shooting on the east coast. He was captured in December in South Fort Myers.