, Salem, MA

Local News

April 29, 2014

Pair charged with drug sales in mall parking lot

DANVERS — Two Boston men were ordered held on $25,000 cash bail yesterday on charges that they were selling drugs out of a Jaguar to customers who would meet them in the parking lot of the Liberty Tree Mall and other nearby shopping plazas, police said.

Yogabi A. Romero German, 25, of Jamaica Plain, and Luis Javier Zayas-Andujar, 26, of Dorchester, were arrested Friday on drug trafficking charges after police followed the Jaguar from the mall to Water Street, and then discovered a cache of heroin, cocaine and crack cocaine in a secret compartment inside the car.

The arrest was the culmination of a group effort by police from Danvers, Peabody, Ipswich and Gloucester, who had all been receiving reports from various sources about drug dealing at the mall and at nearby shopping plazas and other establishments along Endicott Street.

According to Danvers police Detective Tim Williamson’s report, his colleagues in Peabody and Gloucester had information about a gray Jaguar that was also being seen in Peabody. Police ran the plate and learned that the car was registered to a woman who lived in Lawrence but also had a post office box in Dedham.

That was suspicious, according to detectives, because it is a common scenario: drug dealers find a “straw” with little or no criminal record to register a car, in order to avoid suspicion.

The car was spotted in the lot at the Home Depot, next to the mall, where it sat for more than an hour before moving around the Liberty Tree Mall parking lot, making several stops, then settling in a space near the main entrance, where it remained for about 20 minutes.

While police couldn’t see what was happening inside, they watched it pull away.

Patrolman Justin Ellenton, who supervises the department’s police dog, Falco, stopped the Jaguar on Water Street. Officers noticed that the passenger appeared to be making “urgent” and unusual movements inside the car.

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