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Authorities seize fentanyl and cocaine worth $100,000 in Tewksbury
Published On: 12-15-2017 in Category: drug trafficking
Serving a search warrant on an Ames Hill Drive residence in Tewksbury, authorities recently seized cocaine and fentanyl worth $100,000 and arrested three persons on charges of trafficking drugs and conspiring to violate the drug laws. Officers from Tewksbury police, Billerica police and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) jointly conducted the operation, media reports said.
The accused were identified as 49-year-old Wilson Soto, 48-year-old Cristina Richardson and 20-year-old Yojanel Soto, all residents of Tewksbury. Apart from other accusations, Wilson also faces charges of identity theft and possession of a fake Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles document, according to the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office.
Setting the bail amounts at $500,000 for Wilson, $50,000 for Yojanel and $25,000 for Christina, a judge ordered the three accused to continue under house arrest wearing GPS monitoring bracelets. “We are hopeful that the seizure of this massive quantity of the powerfully addictive fentanyl and cocaine in Tewksbury, as well as the diligent prosecution of these alleged offenders that are spreading this poison, will significantly reduce the number of future overdoses and related fatalities,” said Timothy Sheehan, Tewksbury police chief. The next hearing in the case is likely on Dec. 14, 2017.
Officials disclosed that they seized around 86 grams of suspected fentanyl, 950 grams of cocaine, and over $8,000 in cash inside the home. Besides, an additional 99 grams of cocaine and 558 grams of fentanyl were found in a vehicle near the house. Authorities also found a nine-month-old baby inside the home, who was handed over to a relative after informing the Department of Children and Families.
Drug crisis in Massachusetts
The link between drugs and crime in Massachusetts has given rise to criminal behaviors in individuals with addiction. The illicit manufacturing and large-scale distribution of drugs has resulted in a statewide crisis of physical and mental health disorders with Boston gaining the ill-repute of being the nerve center of all drug-related activities.
Although drug abuse in Massachusetts revolves around heroin with a fourfold higher overdose rate when compared to other U.S. states, studies suggest significant numbers of Massachusettians are also falling prey to substances such as fentanyl, cocaine and prescription drugs. Prescription opioids such as OxyContin, Codeine, Percocet and Vicodin are often the gateway drugs to their street cousins like heroin. Due to economic reasons and strict measures, most opioid users often switch over to heroin which is cheaper and easy to procure. Cities like Lawrence, Fall River, Roxbury, Lynn Lowell and Springfield, which are home to considerable ethnic population, have become hubs of drug trafficking and distribution.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), opioid drugs like heroin and oxycodone kill more people in the state than do road accidents related to drunk drivers. “When we looked at the data on substance use, the trend line for opioid-related deaths was amazing; it had been going up steadily since the 1990s,” says Steve Keel, director of prevention services at the state Bureau of Substance Abuse Services.
Drug addiction is treatable
If you or your loved one is battling addiction to cocaine, fentanyl or any other substance, seek treatment immediately. The Boston Drug Treatment and Rehab Center can help you get one of the best addiction treatment programs and embrace sobriety. You may call at our 24/7 helpline number 857-254-1818 for more information on different treatment options in your vicinity.