Massachusetts. – Federal agents and local anti-narcotics police officers arrested 35 Dominicans on Friday from a total of 38 arrested during the “Devil Highway Operation” in several suburbs of Massachusetts, the majority being drug traffickers in Lawrence, according to a federal prosecutor’s statement from the Boston district.
Prosecutors said the operation took place over three weeks and large amounts of fentanyl, heroin, cocaine, firearms and bulletproof vests were confiscated.
The Dominicans arrested are Jorge Alexander Andújar Romero, Edward Jesús Carmona Ortiz, Steven de Jesús de León Trinidad, Luis Felix Franco Herrera, José Rodríguez Walker, Johanny Mejia Núñez, Ronyel Peña, Joe Martínez, Israel Núñez, William Cabrera, Oscar Guadalupe Martínez, Steven Torres Martínez, Jason Jiménez, Milton Elias Lara, Alexander Prado, John Mena, Yunior Darismir Prandys Torres, Santos Obispo Guerrero Lara and Alfredo Méndez Aquino.
Jason Medlen, Louis Delvecchio and Douglas “Sunny” Grasso are also charged.
The operation also involved agents of the Immigration Police and Border Control (ICE), the Department of Homeland Security, the DEA and other federal agencies.
Most of the suspects were captured in Lawrence and the state of New Hampshire, explains a statement from federal prosecutor Andrew Lelling.
“In total, the operation seized more than 14 kilograms of fentanyl, 5 kilograms of heroin, 29 kilograms of cocaine, four firearms, and bulletproof vests,” the prosecutor added.
He said the operation was a huge success in fighting drug trafficking at street level in Lawrence, which is one of the main centers of illegal drug distribution throughout New England.
Lawrence police chief Roy Vasque said that while local agents and detectives were involved, federal agencies took this summer’s initiative in the investigation.
He praised external organizations for their constant help.
“We cannot do it alone. I applaud the United States prosecutors and others to get involved,” Vasque said, noting that the operation was aimed at traffickers and users.
“This type of operation can only be successful with the full commitment of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, along with realistic planning to arrest the most prolific drug dealers. This will not be the last time we will go to drug dealers in Lawrence or their clients from the north, ”said Lelling.