An apartment in Morris Heights harbored a heroin-packaging operation that was capable of distributing more than 10,000 individual-dose glassine envelopes of heroin on the street.
The drug factory was disrupted by law enforcement officials on Wednesday, August 2, when they arrested five suspects who had been under surveillance operating out of 1678 Nelson Avenue, a six-story apartment building in Morris Heights.
NYC special narcotics prosecutor Bridget Brennan said in a news release that about 18 kilograms (nearly 40 pounds) of heroin were seized from the apartment and a suspect’s car at the Cross County Shopping Center in Yonkers.
“It is critically important that we continue our efforts to curb the flow of heroin to our streets,” Brennan said. “In the mill raided yesterday, agents and investigators recovered 40 pounds of what appeared to be heroin destined for the New York City metropolitan area, the Northeast region.”
Found in the apartment were heroin, packaging materials and ink stamps, grinders, electronic scales and hundreds of empty envelopes. Found in the car were the 10,000 drug-filled envelopes.
“Our investigation stopped more than 18 kilos of heroin from reaching our streets,” said NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill. “This diligence by detectives, federal agents and prosecutors will inevitably save lives.”
DEA Special Agent in Charge James Hunt said that opioid traffickers are infiltrating neighborhoods where hard-working New Yorkers are raising families.
“Not only are these traffickers bringing crime and temptation to New Yorkers’ doorsteps, but they are fueling opioid addiction throughout the Northeast,” Hunt said. “That is why New York’s drug law enforcement continues to zero in on traffickers in our city.”
Photo courtesy of Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor
The five alleged suspects arrested were Luis Amador and Carlos Soto of the Bronx; Cheyenne Baker and Marvin Rosa of Lebanon, PA.; and Jose Genao of NY.
The arrests unfolded as officials observed a suspect carrying a backpack leaving the apartment building at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, August 2, and enter a black Jeep.
They followed it to the parking lot at the shopping center. There they saw another person enter the Jeep and exit with the backpack.
The backpack was then placed in the trunk of a silver Ford Focus.
DEA agents stopped the car near 35 Vredenburgh Avenue, and upon searching the trunk, found the backpack, which contained the 10,000 drug-filled envelopes branded with the name “7-Up.”
That’s when Rosa and Baker were arrested. The other suspects were arrested at the apartment building.
Besides the prosecutor’s office, DEA and NYPD, also involved in the bust were District Attorney Darcel Clark, and NY Drug Enforcement Task Force Group T-21.
“This case illustrates our relentless investigation and prosecution of those who traffic heroin to the city and those who package it for distribution in our neighborhoods, causing devastation,” Clark said.