10 Arrested, 6 Kilos of Heroin Seized in Springfield Raids

Six kilos of heroin were seized and 10 people were arrested during simultaneous raids Monday in Springfield, Massachusetts.

The Hampden District Attorney's Office announced Tuesday that authorities had seized drugs that would yield approximately 450,000 bags on the street.

The Drug Enforcement Agency, Massachusetts State Police, Springfield Police and the FBI were involved in the raids, as were agents from the Internal Revenue Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Included in the haul of seized drugs were 4,500 ready-for-sale bags of heroin. Six guns and four motor vehicles were also seized in the raids.

According to the DA's office, more than $1.3 million worth of heroin was found at the drug ring's mill at 73 Cherrelynn St. Officers who responded to that scene arrested 27-year-old Elvis Pujols of Springfield; 22-year-old Harlem Ciprian of Springfield; 19-year-old Yankey Ciprian of Queens, New York; 22-year-old Franky Mosquea of Queens, New York; and 20-year-old Richard Ciprian of Bronx, New York. All six men were charged with trafficking heroin over 200 grams.

On Sterling Street, authorities arrested 24-year-old Miguel Sanchez of Springfield and 27-year-old Astrun Pujols of New York City, charging them with possession of firearms without licenses. Josue Pujols, 30, of Fresh Meadows, New York, was arrested there and charged with trafficking 18-36 grams of heroin, as well as possession of a firearm without a license.

At an unspecified location, police also arrested 28-year-old Fausto Pujols of Springfield, who authorities believe orchestrated the Cherrelyn Street milling operation. He was charged with trafficking over 200 grams of heroin.

"The defendants and locations we targeted in this network were critical components of a significant distribution network in this area," Massachusetts State Police Col. Richard McKeon said. "The success of this investigation is the result of close coordination and cooperation among law enforcement partners, a model that is vital to large-scale drug interdiction operations."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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