Police arrest 25 in multi-state drug trafficking sweep


PROVIDENCE, R.I.(WPRI) — A collection of investigations into drug trafficking dubbed “Operation Panamera” resulted within the arrests of 25 people.

Of these arrested, 23 have been charged in federal courtroom in Windfall, whereas two others have been charged in state courts in Massachusetts and Connecticut, in line with the workplace of appearing U.S. Lawyer Stephen Dambruch. Police stated arrest warrants have been issued for a number of different potential suspects.

At a information convention Monday, officers stated a minimum of 23 kilograms of suspected fentanyl, eleven kilograms of cocaine, eleven kilograms of marijuana and a couple of kilograms of psilocybin mushrooms have been seized in the course of the sweep. Police consider that tons of of kilograms of fentanyl and cocaine have been moved by way of Rhode Island and Massachusetts by the drug trafficking group concerned within the investigation.

“This cooperative effort is yet one more instance of the coordinated strategy regulation enforcement employs to fight the scourge of unlawful drug distribution, notably the opioid epidemic that has hit RI and your complete nation so arduous throughout the previous few years,” Dambruch stated. “Drug overdoses at the moment are the main explanation for demise for People beneath the age of fifty. Sadly, Rhode Island has not been resistant to this disaster.  In 2016, 336 Rhode Islanders died from an overdose, with 195 of these deaths involving fentanyl. To place that quantity in perspective, we had 29 homicides and fifty three visitors fatalities in Rhode Island throughout that very same interval. So, when somebody says drug dealing shouldn’t be a violent crime, consider these numbers.”

Police started their investigation after interrupting the supply of a kilogram of suspected fentanyl on Feb. 14, which was allegedly provided by a Rhode Island man and was being despatched to Bridgewater, Mass. This investigation led to a collection of others that, based on police, has concerned at the very least 36 federal, state and native regulation enforcement businesses in six states and the Dominican Republic.

Police stated a majority of the drug seizures have been made as they have been despatched by means of the mail, throughout visitors stops, and with the execution of courtroom-approved searches of residences, storage models and automobiles.

“DEA is dedicated to investigating and dismantling giant scale poly drug trafficking organizations like this one working in Rhode Island,” DEA Particular Agent in Cost Michael J. Ferguson stated. “The Delossantos drug trafficking operation was allegedly answerable for distributing multi-kilogram…



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