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Authorities bust major heroin pipeline to Jamestown

WBFO News file photo

A major narcotics pipeline has been eliminated in Jamestown. Forty-seven people have been charged in a drug distribution network that funneled heroin from Philadelphia and New York City to Jamestown.

City of Jamestown Chief of Police Harry Snellings says the individuals allegedly involved have been charged with conspiracy, drug possession, distribution, and sale charges.

“We had arrests made in Binghamton, New York City, Puerto Rico, and throughout parts of Chautauqua and Cattaraugus County,” said Snellings.

Snellings says in addition to the arrests, police seized more than 3,000 baggies of heroin worth an estimated $60,000 on the street.

“We actually initiated search warrants related to this case back in March. Some of those initial search warrants yielded over $30,000 in cash, prescription pills, a hand gun and a long gun,” said Snellings.

Snellings says many of the drugs were transported in a canister underneath a 1999 Chevy Astro van. The investigation was called “Operation Horseback.” It included undercover operations, and hundreds of hours of covert surveillance and wiretaps. The take-down was part of a multi-agency investigation led by New York State Police, Jamestown Police, the Department of Homeland Security and the US Border Patrol.

One of the individuals named in the 159-count indictment is accused of selling suboxone strips to a woman who allegedly smuggled them into the Gowanda Correctional Facility. Authorities say another person sold heroin to patients in rehab. Snellings says eliminating the pipeline helps make the community a safer place to live and work.

“I think everybody’s aware of the prevalence of heroin and how it’s becoming such an issue in many communities, not just the City of Jamestown, but throughout our region and I guess you can even say nationally. So, for a short term I think it will address some of the issues here, but unfortunately as we all know there’s always people who are willing to step in and pick up where they left off, ” said Snellings.

Charged in the Chautauqua County indictment are: Alberto Alicea, 54, of Brooklyn Neftali Benitez, aka “Tego”, 33, of Jamestown Bryan Bobe, 25, of Jamestown Charles Brown, aka “Choco Loco”, 42, of Falconer Stephen Bush, 33, of Jamestown Hector Cameron, aka “Loco”, 31, of Jamestown Javier Carasquillo, aka “Oreja”, 43, of Jamestown Neftali Cintron, aka “Pucho”, 51, of Jamestown Hector Colon Rodriguez , aka “Chino”, 40, of Jamestown Ivan DeJesus Pena, 45, of Jamestown Luis DeJesus, aka “Papito”, 29, of Jamestown Alfredo Diaz, aka “Ding Dong”, 51, of Jamestown Samantha DiLallo, 26, of Randolph Carlos Echiaverria, aka “Boobie”, 31, of Jamestown Carlos Encarnacion, 59, of Jamestown Roberto Figueredo, aka “Bost”, 25 Joseph Fontanez, 24, of Jamestown Christopher Freeney, 43, of Jamestown Luis Garcia, aka “Wichie”, 42, of Jamestown Rolando Garcia, 50, of Jamestown John Grilla, 28, of Jamestown Jose Guevara, aka “Pun”, 29, of Jamestown Angelita Guzman, aka “Michelle”, 28, of Jamestown Francisco Guzman Gonzalez, 46, of Jamestown Michael Lisciandro, aka “Dougie”, 23, of Jamestown Moises Lopez-Encarnacion, aka “Junito”, 22, of Mayville Luis Lozada Berberena, aka “Wiso”, 40, of Jamestown Eric M. Lundsten, 29, of Ellington Roberto Morales-Sanchez, aka “Pichulin”, 45, of Jamestown Jean Noriega, aka “John”, 43 Frank Orazio, 24, of Cassadaga LaShawn Paige, 42, of Binghamton Doris Ramos, 25, of Jamestown Ricardo Ramos, 27, of Jamestown Jonathan Ribbing, 27, of Lakewood Eddie Robles, aka “Nelson”, 49, of Jamestown Leslie Rodriguez, 28, of Jamestown Randall Rolison, 51, of Jamestown Olga Santiago, 49, of Jamestown Jesus Javier Suarez, 44, of Jamestown Enrique Torres-Baez, aka “Quique”, 43, of Jamestown James Torres, aka “BK”, 42, of Jamestown Damaris Urena, 35, of Jamestown Francis Vega, aka “Pollo”, 37 Edwin Velasquez, 53, of Falconer Joshua Van Ord, 20, of Lakewood Walter Westerdahl, 33, of Jamestown