SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

January 24, 2014

15 face charges in drug ring

Seven local men said to be involved in pill trafficking

SALEM — Eleven members of an alleged North Shore pill trafficking ring, which prosecutors said was funded in part by the proceeds of insurance fraud, were arraigned yesterday in Salem Superior Court following a two-year investigation.

Four others remain at large.

Prosecutors say the operation was discovered during a separate investigation by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey police, who had been conducting wiretaps of suspects in that area and heard conversations about transactions involving thousands of OxyContin, oxycodone and Percocet pills.

Massachusetts state police began investigating, and last week, a grand jury handed up indictments.

The alleged leader of the enterprise, Henry Hernandez, 37, of Lynn, faces eight counts, including trafficking, conspiracy, money laundering, insurance fraud and larceny. His bail was set at $30,000 on the new charges; Hernandez was already out on $30,000 in an earlier indictment.

Prosecutor A.J. Camelio said Hernandez was heard in the wiretaps discussing how he would obtain the pills, sending runners to New York on some occasions and sometimes going himself. He’s facing an additional charge in Worcester County, after state police stopped him there and found a batch of pills, Camelio told the judge.

Hernandez was also charged with inducing others to make false claims after he was involved in a car accident, according to Camelio, who is prosecuting the case along with Phil Mallard.

Some of the money they collected in the scheme was used to purchase more pills, which were then resold on the North Shore.

Also arraigned yesterday were:

Jason Gentry, 33, of Salem, a former constable, on charges of conspiracy, possession of oxycodone with intent to distribute and insurance fraud. Gentry, who turned himself in after learning of the warrant, was released on personal recognizance.

Manuel Moya, 24, of Salem, charged with misleading investigators, conspiracy, money laundering and insurance fraud. Bail was set at $3,000.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News

AP Video
US Trying to Verify Video of American's Killing FBI Director Addresses Ferguson Shooting in Utah Raw: Police at Scene of St. Louis Shooting Police: 2 Calif. Boys Planned School Shooting NOLA Police Chief Retires Amid Violent Crimes Lunch Bus Delivers Meals to Kids Out of School Water Bottles Recalled for Safety Researcher Testing On-Field Concussion Scanners Rockets Fired From Gaza, in Breach of Ceasefire Raw: Japanese Military Live Fire Exercise Police, Protesters Clash in Ferguson Independent Autopsy Reveals Michael Brown Wounds Nashville Embraces Motley Crue Obama: 'Time to Listen, Not Just Shout' Lawyer: Gov. Perry Indictment a 'Nasty Attack' Raw: Russian Aid Convoy Crosses Into Ukraine Iowa Man Builds Statue of a Golfer Out of Balls Assange Gets Cryptic About Leaving Embassy in UK Raw: Building Collapse in South Africa, 9 Dead Raw: Pope Francis Meets 'Comfort Women'
Comments Tracker