The Drug Enforcement Agency’s Tactical Diversion Squad and local police “executed a search warrant” in the home, which authorities believe functioned as “an elaborate heroin and fentanyl mill,” according to News 12 Westchester.
Law enforcement discovered 6 kilos of heroin and 5 kilos of fentanyl. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says fentanyl, a synthetic opioid, is “50 times more potent than heroin and 100 times more potent than morphine.”
Fentanyl is often added to heroin, cocaine and counterfeit prescription pills without the user’s knowledge, leading to overdose deaths.
The suspects arrested in the raid included Braulio Mata, Jose Garcia, Ramon Aracena Alfe, Dionell Duarte Hernandez and Yarly Mendoza-Delorbe, officials told WABC.
“The five face charges ranging from conspiracy and possession of heroin and fentanyl to resisting arrest,” News 12 said.
Three of the five suspects lived at the house at the time of their arrests, News 12 added.
The home’s landlord told WABC he rented the house in December to a Bronx couple. The landlord claimed he had no idea about any alleged illegal activity.
Neighbors told News 12 the area is normally quiet, and they were surprised to hear about the alleged drug mill.
“However, they say they did notice cars coming and going,” News 12 reported.
“The fentanyl alone has the potency to kill nearly over two million people,” said Ray Donovan, special agent in charge of the DEA’s New York division, according to ABC News.
“I commend the men and women in the Task Force and Tactical Diversion Squad for their quick and efficient investigation into this organization and their diligence to the safety of the residents living nearby,” Donovan said.
The “raid was conducted by a task force that included the DEA, Westchester County police, Orangetown police, the Rockland County Sheriff’s Office, Yonkers police, and the Putnam County Sheriff’s Department,” ABC News noted.
More than 28,000 Americans died in 2017 from synthetic opioid overdoses, according to the CDC.
ABC News reported that as the distribution of fentanyl continues to fuel the fire of the opioid epidemic, a nationwide campaign aimed at stopping the flow of fentanyl has worked to target supply streams across the country.
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