New Haven heroin ring dismantled, 18 arrested

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NEW HAVEN – Eighteen New Haven residents were arrested Wednesday on federal heroin distribution charges.

The arrests stem from “Operation Northern Corridor,” a joint investigation headed by the DEA New Haven Task Force, FBI and New Haven Police Department into the distribution of heroin in New Haven.

The investigation included the use of court-authorized wiretaps, physical surveillance and controlled purchases of heroin from wholesale and street-level distributors operating in the area of Ferry Street, Grand Avenue and Blatchley Avenue in New Haven’s Fair Haven neighborhood.

“We allege that this organization distributed a significant amount of heroin in Fair Haven,” said U.S. Attorney United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut Deirdre M. Daly in a statement. “Because heroin is endangering and increasingly taking the lives of so many citizens, the U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to working with the DEA and our law enforcement partners to target groups and prosecute individuals that traffic this insidious drug.”

“DEA is committed to investigating and dismantling large-scale drug trafficking organizations like this one operating in the New Haven area,” said Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England Michael J. Ferguson in a state,. “Heroin distribution destroys people’s lives and wreaks havoc in our communities. DEA and our law enforcement partners will aggressively pursue any group that distributes these drugs.”

On July 9, 2015, a grand jury in New Haven returned two indictments charging a total of 19 individuals with heroin distribution offenses and the following 18 individuals were arrested Wednesday : Wilson Vasquez, a.k.a. “Will” and “Pancho,” 42, Francisco Rodriguez, a.k.a. “Franky” and “Bubba,” 49, Victor Rivera, 43, Todd Beilby, 53, Nelson Colon, 39, Alfredo Collazo, a.k.a. “Indio,” 37, Miguel Soto, a.k.a. “Fat Boy,” 30, Frank Mrowka, 52, Elio Delima, a.k.a. “Victor Cuevas” and “Ely,” 36, Emmanuel Fleming, a.k.a. “Mikey,” 35, Jose Lugo, a.k.a. “Kiro,” 45, Anthony Velez, a.k.a. “Tone,” 36, Jose Albarran, a.k.a. “Ghangi,” 57, Luis Albarran, a.k.a. “Lulu,” 38, Victor Azeevedo, 43, Roberto Torres, a.k.a. “Tony,” 48, Jose Vasquez, 41, and  Jose Davila, 26

One defendant is currently being sought.

In association with today’s arrests, law enforcement officers seized approximately 500 grams of raw heroin, three handguns, approximately $40,000 in cash and five vehicles.

Wilson Vasquez, Rodriguez, Rivera, Beilby, Colon, Collazo, Soto, Mrowka, Delima and Fleming, are charged with conspiracy to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin, an offense that carries mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 10 years and a maximum term of imprisonment of life.

Lugo, Velez, Jose Albarran, Luis Albarran, Azevedo, Torres, Jose Vazquez and Davila are charged with conspiracy to distribute a quantity of heroin, an offense that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years.

Delima, Fleming, Collazo, Delima and Lugo are also charged with one or more counts of possession with intent to distribute heroin.

Delima plead guilty in September and was sentenced to 8 years in prison in December.