FBI: 20 suspects in heroin trafficking ring indicted

CENTRAL ISLIP - Twenty alleged members of a massive heroin-trafficking ring on Long Island have been indicted, FBI officials say. Investigators say the ring sold nearly $3 million worth of heroin on Long Island in a nine-month span. Among those charged with moving the drugs are college students, married couples and even a retired Suffolk County police officer, officials say.Federal agents arrested the alleged members during raids at dozens of homes across Long Island, Brooklyn and Queens this morning. The arrests come after a months-long investigation into the heroin epidemic on Long Island dubbed "Operation County Connection." Prosecutors say the drugs were smuggled into the U.S. from the Dominican Republic, then mixed in Massachusetts, stored in Brooklyn and Queens, and eventually trafficked out to Nassau and Suffolk counties.Among the defendants charged in the case are Roland Stern, a retired Suffolk County Marine Bureau police officer, and his daughter, Corey Stern. Also facing federal charges are Tina and Matthew Catrini, a married couple; Kathryn Pappas, a Dean's List honor student at Hofstra University; and Leonardo Lopez, whom sources say is the husband of a NYPD officer.Officials say 18 of the 20 alleged ring members are in custody; two more are on the run, police say.

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