December 11, 2014
Contact: Timothy P. McMahon
Phone Number: (973) 776-1143
Eleven People Charged In Takedown Of Drug Trafficking Organization
CAMDEN, N.J. - - Carl J. Kotowski, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Jersey Division, and Paul J. Fishman, U. S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey, announced federal, state and local law enforcement authorities arrested eight people this morning in connection with a ring that allegedly trafficked heroin, powder cocaine and crack cocaine in the Atlantic City area.
In pre-dawn raids, agents and officers of the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office, N.J. State Police and Atlantic City Police Department arrested eight people, seven of whom were charged by indictment with drug trafficking conspiracy; one of those defendants, Toye Tutis, is also charged with one count of money laundering along with Jazmin S. Vega, who is charged only with a single count of money laundering.
A ninth defendant is already in custody on other charges in Pennsylvania and two more defendants are being sought in California.
The defendants arrested in New Jersey today are scheduled to make their initial court appearance this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Ann Marie Donio in Camden federal court.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
The defendants are allegedly members of a drug trafficking organization that dealt in large quantities of heroin, powder cocaine, and crack cocaine in and around Atlantic City. All but one of the defendants is charged with a single count of conspiracy to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine, more than 280 grams of crack cocaine, and more than one kilogram of heroin.
The conspiracy count carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum potential penalty of life in prison, and a $10 million fine. The count of money laundering carries a maximum potential penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the FBI’s Newark Division, Atlantic City Resident Agency, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Aaron T. Ford; the DEA’s Newark Division, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Carl J. Kotowski; the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor James P. McClain; and the Atlantic City Police Department, under the direction of Police Chief Henry Wright, with the investigation leading to today’s arrests.
He also thanked the N.J. State Police; the Atlantic County Sheriff’s Office; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; U.S. Immigration and Customs (ICE)-Homeland Security (HSI); U.S. Postal Inspection Service; Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office and the Ventnor, Northfield and Millville police departments for their assistance.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Diana V. Carrig of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division in Camden.
The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations and the defendants are considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.