Approximately 30,000 bags of heroin and nearly a half kilo of raw heroin have been seized as a part of an investigation into heroin trafficking in Hampden County.
It’s a major drug bust involving more than two-and-a-half- pounds of heroin, that is now, off the street.
Hampden County District Attorney Anthony Gulluni announced during a news conference Wednesday that five people were arrested and charged in connection with the investigation:
- 41-year-old Fidel Gil, of Hartford: trafficking in heroin over 200 grams and conspiracy to violate narcotics laws
- 23-year-old Paola Mercedes Reyes-Desantos, unknown address: trafficking in heroin over 200 grams and conspiracy to violate narcotics laws
- 22-year-old Christian Rivera, of Springfield: trafficking heroin over 200 grams, possession of ammunition without an FID, and possession of a Class D drug with intent to distribute
- 21-year-old Cassandra Cardona, of Springfield: possession of a class D drug with intent to distribute
- 22-year-old Anthony Guadalupe, unknown address: trafficking over 200 grams of heroin and trafficking 18-36 grams of heroin
According to DA spokesman Jim Leydon, Massachusetts State Police learned during the investigation that a large shipment of heroin would be coming into the area.
Leydon said state police detectives witnessed a drug deal at a self-storage facility in Chicopee early Tuesday morning, and later pulled over the suspect vehicle on I-391.
A police dog was called in and alerted detectives to 400 grams of raw un-cut heroin and 600 ready-for-sale bags of heroin in the car. State police also seized approximately $12,174 in cash during the traffic stop in which Gil and Reyes-Desantos were arrested.
Hampden District Attorney Anthony Gulluni told 22News that this amount of heroin would have been processed into larger quantities which then would have been sold on the streets.
As a result of their arrests, six search warrants were later executed at two Springfield homes, two vehicles, a motel room in West Springfield, and a storage unit in Chicopee.
Leydon said 30,000 bags of heroin with an estimated street value of $150,000 were seized at the storage unit, and another 1,900 bags of heroin were seized at West Springfield’s EconoLodge.
“At the level these individuals were at with this kind of product and this kind of money, they were not necessarily distributing to users, they were distributing to some upper level, mid-level, and street dealers, so they were sort of up there in the supply chain,” DA Gulluni told 22News.
The DA added that an overdose victim was found at that same motel earlier this week, and was found to be in possession of the same type of heroin seized during this major drug bust.
DA Gulluni told 22News that this was one of the biggest drug busts this year. One Springfield resident told 22News he’s glad Hampden County is working to keep these drugs off the streets.
“The cops have been doing their job and it’s just been better for me, I’m able to bring my kids around and it’s just been a lot safer,” said local resident.
All five suspects are scheduled to be arraigned in court Wednesday.