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Major NJ Drug Ring Smashed: Pounds Of Heroin, Fentanyl Seized, 14 Busted

Hudson County Prosecutor's Office
Hudson County Prosecutor's Office Photo Credit: Hudson County Prosecutor's Office

Nearly three pounds of heroin and fentanyl were seized, along with three handguns, $70,000 in cash and more than $500,000 worth of jewelry in the takedown of a major North Jersey/New York City drug ring, authorities said.

A U.S. Postal Service worker was among 14 people arrested as more than 100 local, county and federal law enforcers executed search warrants across Jersey City, Rahway and the Bronx, Hudson County Prosecutor Esther Suarez said.They also hit a Newark location where Suarez said the drugs were processed and packaged for sale.

The ringleader, she said, was Charles King, 48, who was among a dozen Jersey City residents arrested in the takedown.

King and his associates were “fueled by plain greed – a desire to enrich themselves with jewelry, cash, guns, and cars – all at the expense of the community who is left to shoulder the burdens brought on by organized drug trade,” said Jason Molina, the special agent in charge of the Newark office of Homeland Security Investigations.

The street value of the seized drugs alone was estimated at $342,000, authorities noted.

King was charged with leading a drug trafficking network, money laundering and conspiracy, they said.

Another major player, ex-con Ronderence Pinckney, 50, also of Jersey City, was charged with conspiracy, money laundering and various drug and weapons charges, including being possessing a firearm as a convicted felon and possessing a stolen handgun, authorities said.

The remaining defendants:

  • Jorge Rosario, 49, of Rahway, and Martin Adorno, 45, of the Bronx were charged with conspiring to sell fentanyl. Adorno also was charged with money laundering conspiracy;
  • Erving Carter, 50, Kenneth Muldrow, 49, Charles Taylor, 48, and Terrance Grant, 33, were all charged with conspiring to sell fentanyl;
  • Marlon Wells, 49, and Joseph Williams, 59, were both charged with having heroin for sale, conspiring to sell fentanyl and possession of drug paraphernalia;
  • Lois Hill, 62, was charged with having heroin for sale;
  • Kharheim Crawford, 49, was charged with heroin and drug paraphernalia possession;
  • Tamika Hill, 46, was charged with money laundering;
  • Jada Carter, 19, was charged with obstruction.

Additional arrests are expected from the four-month investigation led by Suarez’s Narcotics Task Force.

Participating in the probe and takedown were, she said, were:

  • the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office, the Hudson County Regional SWAT Team, the Hudson County Sheriff’s Office and the sheriff’s K-9 unit;
  • the United States Department of Homeland Security Investigations, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and the U.S. Postal Service Office of the Inspector General;
  • the Union County Prosecutor’s Office and Union County SWAT Team;
  • the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office;
  • the Jersey City Police Department;
  • the New Jersey State Police HAZMAT Unit;
  • the New York City Special Narcotics Prosecutor’s Office;
  • the Bronx District Attorney’s Office.

The various agencies “worked collaboratively with the goal of dismantling a high-level and dangerous drug operation,” Suarez said.

As a result, she said, “we were able to seize a large quantity of lethal narcotics, confiscate firearms that would have been used for unlawful purposes, and make the neighborhoods in which this network operated safer for those who live there.”

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