Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas and the partners of the Federal Bureau of Investigation Long Island Gang Task Force announced that 31 people have been indicted for their alleged involvement in a heroin and cocaine ring that operated in Nassau, Suffolk and Albany counties, the largest take down of its kind in Nassau County history.
The majority of the individuals have been arrested and are expected to be arraigned on various crimes ranging from operating as a major trafficker (an A-I felony), first-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance (an A-I felony), second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance (an A-II felony), second-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance (an A-II felony), third-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance (a B felony), third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance (a B felony), second-degree conspiracy (a B felony), and fourth-degree conspiracy (an E felony), and other related charges.
The arrests are the result of a nine-month long investigation by the FBI Long Island Gang Task Force into local heroin distributors and included assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Rockville Centre Police Department, Nassau County Police Department, Suffolk County Police Department, New York State Police, Hempstead Police Department, Garden City Police Department, Glen Cove Police Department, Nassau County Sheriff’s Department, Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office and the Suffolk County Department of Probation.
“Heroin dealers sell poison that is devastating our communities, and today’s takedown- the largest in Nassau history- is a crushing blow to this network of traffickers selling drugs in New York,” said DA Singas. “Law enforcement stands united in our commitment to take on this deadly epidemic, and we will continue to track down, arrest, and aggressively prosecute anyone who traffics and sells heroin on Long Island.”
“We are facing a crisis when it comes to heroin addiction. It’s not just happening in bad neighborhoods, in big cities; it’s happening right here in suburban Long Island. Narcotics officers are arresting school teachers, doctors and nurses. We are committed to using all the law enforcement techniques at our disposal to free our communities from the plight of heroin, cocaine and other controlled substances,” said Michael T. Harpster, special agent in charge of the New York FBI Criminal Division.
Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano stated, “I commend District Attorney Singas, the Nassau County Police Department and all the law enforcement agencies involved in bringing these drug thugs to justice and closing down this drug distribution ring. These arrests will have a major impact on curtailing the availability of heroin and cocaine in Nassau County, however, others dealers are out there and we will continue our efforts to take them down.”
“Today’s arrests should send a resounding bold statement to drug dealers that this type of crime will never be tolerated in Nassau County. The heroin issues nationwide and here at home serve as a constant reminder that our job is never done and we will continue to arrest those who violate the law. The collaboration with our associated law enforcement agencies on these arrests will continue to be one of our top priorities,” said Nassau County Acting Commissioner of Police Thomas Krumpter.
DA Singas said that, according to the indictment, in November 2015, brothers Donnell Hoyes, 35, and Terence Hoyes, 29, sold heroin and cocaine in the Hempstead area. In December, Donnell Hoyes was incarcerated on a different matter and his brother allegedly took over the narcotics distribution from his garden apartment home on Gladys Avenue in Hempstead.
In January, the NCDA office became involved and surveillance of the drug ring was increased. The investigation identified that David Ramis was allegedly the supplier of heroin and cocaine to Terence Hoyes, as well as approximately 50 others dealers throughout the Island and Upstate.
Ramis is charged with supplying large quantities of heroin and cocaine to other major traffickers here on Long Island – including Terence Hoyes, Lonnie McKithen, Shameek Porter and Ronald Gilbert – all of whom are Nassau County residents, with ties to Suffolk County.
These dealers – as well as the other defendants charged in the 103-count indictment – allegedly cut, packaged and redistributed the narcotics for their own personal profit. During the course of the investigation more than $250,000 worth of cocaine and 50 grams of heroin was seized by police during search warrants and car stops. Five of the defendants are charged with operating as a major trafficker, which carries a sentence of 15 years to life.
Assistant District Attorneys Lee Genser, Teresa Aiello, Deputy Bureau Chief Christiana McSloy, and Chief Edward Friedenthal of DA Singas’ Special Operations, Narcotics and Gangs Bureau, are prosecuting the case. The charges are merely accusations and the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless found guilty.