Newark – Acting Essex County Prosecutor Theodore N. Stephens, II, and Newark Public Safety Director Anthony F. Ambrose announced today that the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office executed search warrants in the Ironbound section of Newark, Harrison, Kearny and locations in Monmouth and Ocean counties, resulting in the confiscation of approximately 23,000 grams of marijuana and two kilos of cocaine with a combined estimated street value of $1.1 million.
It is alleged that drug dealers delivered to buyers at their homes or other locations throughout the Ironbound section of Newark in what was a retail business on wheels.
Buyers would call in their orders and drugs would be delivered shortly.
“These distributors operated in a way that made them feel they were immune from detection. The methods employed were designed to avoid attracting the attention of law enforcement. The distributors used non-descript vehicles.
Having a well-established customer base gave the drug dealers a false sense of comfort,’’ said Acting Prosecutor Stephens. “They thought they could sell narcotics with impunity.”
In addition to the cocaine and marijuana, seven guns, including a .223 assault rifle and 12-gauge shotgun, were recovered; nearly $300,000 in U.S. currency; 62 oxycodone pills with a street value of $1,550; and three Xanax pills with a street value of $30.
Dubbed “Operation Short Storm,” the raids resulted in the arrest of 31 people. Another 16 have been charged but remain at large. In addition, 12 vehicles, including two Mercedes Benz 550 sedans, were seized.
The search warrants were executed on August 22 and 23, by detectives from the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office along with officers from police agencies in Newark, Harrison, Kearny, Monmouth County and Ocean County.
Jewelry, including apparent Rolex, Brietling and Gucci watches, were also seized.
“As always, effective law enforcement is about partnership, whether it’s with other agencies or the community,” Director Ambrose said.
Officers from Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office, Bloomfield Police Department, Essex County Sheriff’s Department, East Hanover Police Department, East Orange Police Department, Fairfield Police Department, Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office, Irvington Police Department, Lacey Police Department, Livingston Police Department, Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, Morris County Sheriff’s Department, Montclair Police Department, Newark Police Department, New Jersey State Police, Ocean County Sheriff’s Department, Paramus Police Department, Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office, Paterson Police Department, Sussex County Prosecutor’s Office, West Orange Police Department, West Caldwell Police Department.
Attached is a list of all defendants and the charges.
These are accusations.
All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until they enter a guilty plea or are found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.