Somerset County officials announced the arrests of Christian Duarte, 44, Fernando Villa, 35, and David Hernandez-Garcia, 22, all of South Bound Brook, following a four-month undercover narcotics investigation into the distribution of cocaine in Somerset County by defendant Duarte.
Prosecutor John P. McDonald stated that on Wednesday, June 29, at approximately 7:00 p.m., members of the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office Organized Crime and Narcotics Task Force were continuing the narcotic investigation into the distribution of cocaine by Christian Duarte from a residence located on Elizabeth Street in South Bound Brook.
Defendant Duarte was ultimately arrested outside of his residence and found to be in possession of 101 grams of cocaine (approximately 3.5 ounces).
Following the arrest of defendant Duarte, County Task Force detectives obtained a Superior Court-ordered search warrant for the Elizabeth Street residence. Task Force detectives, along with members of the Somerset County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit, executed the Superior Court search warrant.
According to Prosecutor McDonald, a search of the residence yielded an additional 41 grams of cocaine along with packaging material.
The investigation revealed that David Hernandez-Garcia, along with Fernando Villa, also resided in the residence.
Prosecutor McDonald said that Hernandez-Garcia was present inside the residence at the time of the search warrant and was placed under arrest without incident. Fernando Villa, who resides at the residence, was not present.
On Tuesday, July 12, at approximately 1:00 p.m., members of the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office Organized Crime and Narcotics Task Force located Fernando Villa in the area of Main Street, South Bound Brook, where he was placed under arrest without incident in reference to the narcotic investigation.
Prosecutor McDonald stated that defendant Duarte was charged with Distribution of CDS (cocaine), Distribution of CDS (cocaine) within 500 feet of a public park and Distribution of CDS (cocaine) within 1000 feet of a school zone.
Defendant Villa was charged with Possession of CDS (cocaine) with the Intent to Distribute and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.
Defendant Hernandez-Garcia was charged with Possession of CDS (cocaine).
According to Prosecutor McDonald, the total amount of cocaine seized during this investigation was approximately 172 grams of cocaine (6 ounces), with an estimated street value of $10,320.00.
Defendants Duarte and Villa were each lodged at the Somerset County Jail pending a detention hearing. Defendant Hernandez-Garcia was released on his own recognizance pending a court appearance.
Somerset County officials request anyone with information relating to this investigation to contact the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office Organized Crime and Narcotics Task Force at (908) 575-3300.
Information can also be provided through the Somerset County Crime Stoppers’ Tip Line at 1-888-577-TIPS (8477).
All anonymous Crime Stopper tips will be kept confidential.