Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato briefs media on the mega-narco bust
Surveillance of street corner drug deal at the Jersey shore has led authorities to busting drug dealing rings operating in two states and a foreign country, as well as the recovery of close to $1million cash, as well as well, as 27 luxury vehicles from the drug rings
Authorities in Ocean County say 31 people have been charged as part of the rings that dealt opioids and other drugs throughout New Jersey, in the Bronx, New York, and operated in at least one other country.
Authorities broke up nine drug production facilities, seized 90,000 doses of heroin, nearly 20 pounds of cocaine and hundreds of prescription opioid pills, according to Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato.
“Ocean County has been designated as ground zero in the opioid epidemic in New Jersey,” he said. “This is something we need to address,” Coronato said.
The case was the county’s first after being added to a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration “High Intensity Drug Trafficking” task force.
Coronato told the gathered media that the case began with officers monitoring street-level drug transaction in Lakewood, New Jersey. The surveillance netted dealers who were subsequently arrested. Officers then followed the chain of distribution, which led them to narcotics activity in Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, Passaic and Union counties. The track also led to the Bronx in New York City, and a foreign country investigators wouldn’t identify.
Drug facilities in Bloomfield, Jackson, Sayreville, Paterson, Piscataway and Plainfield were dismantled, authorities said.