DA: Probe into fatal overdoses yields 24 arrests in drug ring
An investigation into 10 fatal overdoses in Nassau and Suffolk counties resulted in 24 arrests and the seizure of heroin, fentanyl, illegal guns and thousands of dollars in cash, Suffolk District Attorney Tom Spota announced Wednesday.
Spota says cousins Carlos and Guillermo Torres, of Massapequa, were the major traffickers who routinely brought the drugs from Queens to western Suffolk and eastern Nassau.
He says 10 people died in the last few months after taking the heroin produced by the drug ring, which allegedly operated a stash house out of 455 Carlls Path in Deer Park.
"This ring was cutting the heroin with upwards of 50 percent fentanyl and in some instances, 100 percent fentanyl," says Spota.
Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that can be up to 50 times stronger than heroin.
In addition to the drugs, police seized handguns, an AK-47 and $20,000 in cash.
Suffolk Chief of Detectives Gerald Gigante says narcotics detectives have started responding to each overdose case in the county, which could total five a day. From there, detectives are able to learn more about dealers and develop investigations.
Spota says he plans to pursue homicide charges against the alleged dealers involved with the overdose deaths.
"They knew the danger of fentanyl and heroin, the powerful nature of the drugs they were selling, and quite frankly, it was pure greed," says Spota.