SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ - South Brunswick Police Chief Raymond Hayducka today announced charges against three suspects in a nationwide dark web narcotics operation based out of central New Jersey. An 18 month investigation initiated by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office resulted in the execution of six search warrants and the arrest of three suspects in New Jersey. The search warrants were executed by a team of law enforcement agencies at locations in South Brunswick, Jamesburg, Old Bridge, Jackson, Asbury Park, and Vineland on April 3rd.
Law enforcement executing the search warrants uncovered the largest quantity of pills in New Jersey history with approximately 620,000 alprazolam tablets (Xanax) seized. The pills had a street value of 3 million dollars. In addition investigators seized approximately 500 glassines of fentanyl-laced heroin and quantities of methamphetamine, ketamine, gamma hydroxybutyric acid (GHB), and more. Investigators also recovered four pill presses and two industrial mixers, among other drug manufacturing items, and thousands of dollars’ worth of cryptocurrency.
The suspects operated storefronts on the dark web that sold and shipped hundreds of thousands of counterfeit Xanax tablets and other controlled substances to buyers in 43 states, and laundering $2.3 million in cryptocurrency by using preloaded debit cards and withdrawing cash at ATMs in Manhattan and New Jersey.
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In New Jersey the suspects face the following charges –
Chester Anderson age 44 of South Brunswick is charged with (1) Leader of a Narcotics Trafficking Network, (2) Maintaining a Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDS) Facility, (3) Manufacturing, Distributing, Dispensing CDS, (4) Possession with intent to distribute over 100 prescription pills, (5) Endangering the Welfare of Juvenile, (6) Maintaining a fortified CDS manufacturing facility, (7) Distribution of CDS in a School Zone, (8) Possession of Steroids, and CDS paraphernalia.
Jarrette Codd age 41 of Jamesburg is charged with (1) Possession of MDMA, (2) Maintaining a Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDS) Facility, (3) Possession with intent to distribute over 100 prescription pills possession, (4) Possession of Steroids and CDS paraphernalia.
Ronald MacCarty age 51 of Jackson is charged with Possession of Steroids.
All 3 suspects are currently being held in New York were they face money laundering and conspiracy charges.
Investigating agencies included South Brunswick Police, Manhattan District Attorney, United States Secret Service, United States Postal Inspection Service, New Jersey State Police, and Middlesex County Prosecutors Office.
Chief Raymond Hayducka credited the initiative and teamwork that dismantled the drug operation. “This case involved local, county, State, and federal law enforcement working collectively for 18 months to identify, track, and dismantle this operation. The suspects traveled the dark web in the hopes of concealing their crimes but investigators tracked them both online and with physical surveillance to crack this case,” he said. He added, “A key aspect of the investigation was the collaboration between the prosecuting agencies, Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office and the Manhattan District Attorney Office.”
Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance said, “When our office received reports of suspicious activity at ATMs in New York and New Jersey, our talented investigators followed the money, using our state-of-the-art Cyber Lab to uncover a dark web counterfeit pill seller whose $2.3 million operation spanned the U.S.. Not only is this the first time state prosecutors in New York have taken down a dark web storefront, this takedown represents the largest pill seizure in New Jersey’s history. If you are engaging in illicit activity on the dark web, you are on notice: we know how to find you, we know how to put you out of business, and we know how to hold you criminally accountable.”
Patrick Freaney, Assistant Special Agent in Charge, New York Field Office, U.S. Secret Service, said: “The Secret Service remains dedicated to vigorously investigating and pursuing those responsible for cyber related crimes. This case is an example of the tremendous community impact law enforcement can have through successful partnerships. The Secret Service looks forward to continuing our proven partnership with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office in combatting the evolving cyber threat to our communities.”
Edward Gallashaw, USPIS Assistant Inspector in Charge, said: “Dark web operators should know when you make the US Mail a party to your illicit deeds, you bring not only Postal Inspectors but the full weight of law enforcement to stop you in your tracks from victimizing the public.”