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12 charged in suspected heroin trafficking ring

On Aug. 15, 12 people were indicted on drug trafficking charges after they were accused of moving large quantities of heroin from New York to two New Jersey counties. The indictment was unsealed in a federal court in Manhattan.

Authorities claimed that the 12 individuals all pooled their money to buy heroin in New York. They then allegedly packaged the drugs and sold it in Ocean and Monmouth counties. In particular, a 34-year-old Bronx man was accused of supplying a 24-year-old Paterson man and a 26-year-old Toms River man with heroin. These two individuals were then assisted by others in managing other aspects of the alleged drug trafficking ring, including the packing, storing and distribution of the heroin. A 40-year-old New Jersey man and a 30-year-old Manchester man reportedly helped distribute the drugs. Of the 12 indicted, one person reportedly was still at large.

Each person was facing charges for conspiracy to distribute narcotics. Several of the accused individuals were also charged with possessing with intent to distribute 1 kilogram or more of the drugs. Others were facing charges for possessing with intent to distribute 100 grams of substances containing a detectable amount of heroin.

When federal authorities are involved in investigating drug crimes, the potential charges and their associated punishments can be steep. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the case, penalties can range from a minimum prison sentence of five years to a maximum of 40 years. A criminal defense attorney may challenge the allegations against a person, especially if there were others involved in the alleged crimes. One possible strategy could be to argue that the defendant was coerced into participating.

Source: Manchester Patch, "Manchester Man Among 12 Charged By Feds In Monmouth-Ocean Heroin Ring", Karen Wall, Aug. 16, 2017

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