Police & Fire

Krauszer's Co-Owners Indicted on Drug Charges

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SOMERVILLE, NJ - A Bridgewater man, co-owner of Krauszer's on East Main Street, has been indicted on charges of possessing synthetic marijuana with intent to distribute, according to an article on mycentraljersey.com.

Umesh B. Patel, 51, of Bridgewater, and Vipin Patel, 54, of Somerville, both co-owners of the convenience store, are facing one count of the charge that carries a five-year prison sentence, the article said.

Umesh Patel, 53, of Somerville, the owner of Banner Food Store on East Main Street, is also facing two counts of second-degree possession with intent to distribute and two counts of third-degree possession with intent to distribute.

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According to Somerset County Prosecutor Geoffrey Soriano, on May 29 at about 5:20 p.m., detectives from the Organized Crime and Narcotics Task Force, along with members of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency and the Somerville Police Department, executed search warrants on the two convenience stores.

Umesh B. Patel, the release said, was advised of the investigation, and a search of the business resulted in the seizure of 902 bags of synthetic cannabis from a store refrigerator, plus an additional 60 bags of synthetic cannabis in the back room storage area. In addition, Soriano said, detectives seized $34,904, and both Umesh B. Patel and Vipin Patel were arrested.

A second team of Task Force members, Soriano said, executed a search warrant at the Banner Food Store, where Umesh Patel was working in the stockroom. Soriano said a search of the store resulted in the seizure of 20 bags of synthetic cannabis from behind the front counter area and an additional 100 bags in a rear stock room.

Detectives also seized $5,262. In addition, Umesh Patel gave consent for a search of his home, which led to the seizure of 109 bags of synthetic cannabis.

All of the drugs seized, Soriano said, had an estimated street value of about $29,775.

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