By Neil H. Dempsey
---- — BEVERLY — SWAT officers descended on a Dane Street rooming house yesterday morning to serve a “high risk” search warrant and arrested a man on various gun and drug trafficking charges, police said.
Roland Masse, 36, of 68 Dane St., Apt. 2, was arrested on charges of trafficking in cocaine, possession of a firearm without a license, possession of ammunition without an FID card, defacing a firearm serial number, a firearms security violation and having a revoked license.
Masse was also wanted on four warrants and was identified as an illegal alien by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, which issued an ICE detainer on him, according to a press release from Officer Dave Costa.
Following a five-week investigation by Beverly detectives, local police and officers in the North Eastern Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council SWAT team converged on the Grey Croft Inn at about 9:30 a.m. The SWAT team was necessary because Masse kept a large pit bull in his room and because of “the presence of other residents with criminal backgrounds” in the house, which has about 20 occupants, said Costa.
Officers entered and secured the apartment, handcuffed Masse and then brought in Animal Control Officer James Lindley to secure the dog.
Afterwards, Beverly detectives searched the apartment and found “a large amount” of both powdered and crack cocaine, a .38 revolver with a defaced serial number, ammunition and cash from drug sales, said Costa.
The firearm was reportedly located in a laptop-style bag next to where Masse was sitting when officers first entered his room.
Costa said the investigation is ongoing.