Couple arraigned in $1.2M marijuana operation

Peabody police seized a large amount of marijuana and THC infused edibles during a raid last October on a John Road home.

PEABODY — A couple charged with running a large-scale marijuana and THC distribution business out of their Peabody home, where they have young children, and a Danvers recording studio pleaded not guilty to trafficking and other charges Friday. 

Gary Cioffi Jr., 36, and his wife, Jennifer Cioffi, 38, both of 9 John Road, were indicted earlier this year in connection with the alleged operation, along with a third person, Marco Sosa, 28, of Salem. 

The indictments against Gary Cioffi include a marijuana trafficking charge stemming from the discovery of more than 200 pounds of marijuana, vape oil and $137,000 in cash in Cioffi's Danvers recording studio, Maximum Sound, in 2018. 

While that case was pending, investigators learned that Cioffi was still allegedly operating a drug distribution business out of his home, where he and his wife live with their children, then ages 6 and 9, prosecutor Karen Hopwood said. 

A raid last October turned up what officials estimated was $1.2 million worth of drugs, including 119 pounds of marijuana, seven pounds of THC oil used in vaping and edibles, THC-infused candy, hallucinogenic mushrooms, oxycodone and thousands of vape cartridges. 

Hopwood told Salem Superior Court Judge Salim Tabit that the odor of marijuana "permeated" the home, where the drugs were being processed, leading to the wanton and reckless child endangerment charges against the couple. 

Hopwood and the couple's lawyer, Steven Topazio, had already reached an agreement that Gary Cioffi's bail would remain at the same $100,000 set by a Peabody District Court judge and posted by Cioffi last fall. Jennifer Cioffi's bail was set at $5,000, which she was allowed to post shortly after the hearing, without being placed in custody. She has not previously been charged in the district court. 

Sosa was arraigned last May. The couple's arraignment was postponed due to the pandemic. 




A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for Aug. 31, where Topazio may seek to reduce Gary Cioffi's bail.


Courts reporter Julie Manganis can be reached at 978-338-2521, by email at or on Twitter at @SNJulieManganis. 


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