Kathleen G. Kane - Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General - Protecting Pennsylvanians

June 24, 2014

48 mid- and street-level drug dealers charged in "Operation Tourniquet" 

2014_06_24_berks_sweepHARRISBURG - Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane and Berks County District Attorney John Adams today announced charges against 48 mid- and street-level drug dealers operating in and around Berks County.

The joint investigation, known as "Operation Tourniquet," began in July 2013 and focused on the distribution of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana and prescription medications. The investigation revealed that the mid- and street-level dealers were part of two organizations, who were loosely tied and responsible for distributing drugs throughout at least three counties including Berks, Lancaster and Schuylkill.

Agents and detectives utilized a number of undercover drug buys and extensive surveillance, which revealed that both organizations allegedly colluded with one another to acquire bulk quantities of drugs that were eventually broken down into street-level quantities to be distributed among numerous customers.

On Monday, June 23, 2014, agents executed a total of 17 search warrants and seized 10 firearms ? including assault rifles, shotguns and semi-automatic handguns ? nine vehicles, a dune buggy, a substantial amount of heroin along with marijuana, synthetic marijuana and cocaine, various packaging materials, numerous cell phones and approximately $40,000 cash.

Attorney General Kane thanked the Berks County District Attorney's Office, the Pennsylvania State Police, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security - Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the U.S. Marshall's Service, the Berks County Drug Task Force, the Reading Police Department and the Berks County Sheriff's Department for their assistance with the investigation.

The case will be prosecuted in Berks County by the Berks County District Attorney's Office.

Below is a complete list of the defendants and the charges against them. Based upon the search warrants executed on Monday, June 23, 2014, additional charges will be filed against some of the defendants.


Dealers


--Miguel "Mikey" Torres, 33, 518 Oley St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Hommy Colon, 33, 303 N. Waverly St., Shillington, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Jonathan Gonzalez, 26, 401 Elm St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Erick Marrero, 19, 426 W. Oley St. and 624 Gordon St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Nestor Gonzalez, 23, 341 W. Douglass St., 624 Gordon St. and 913 N. Front St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Luis Ramirez, 23, 300 Lackawanna Apt. 3D, 624 Gordon St. and 973 Scott St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Luis Ortiz, 23, 137 Rose St. and 550 Minor St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Daniel Velez, 30, currently in a half-way house in Wernersville, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Jorge Morales-Gasparini, 48, 135 Rose St. and 550 Minor St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Jaime Acosta, 34, 1024 Scott St., 408 W. Greenwich St. and 741 Schuylkill Ave., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Jacob Rivera, 20, 402 S. 10th St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Edwin Colon, 34, 33 Maple St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Staley Williams, 35, 402 Sycamore Road, West Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--William Colon, 24, 340 Pearl St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Alexis Arroyo, 39, 1900 Lorraine Road, Apt. 27D, Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Daniel Roman, 33, 104 Oley St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Angel Garcia, 38, address unknown, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Harry Yellets Jr., 54, 45 S. Pearl St., Lancaster, Lancaster County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Maurice Price, 35, 1131 Wabank Apt. F 201, Lancaster, Lancaster County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Victor Brown, 44, 350 Elm St. and 337 Minor St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--William Cordero, 38, address unknown, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Anthony Ovid, 37, 327 Hollenbach St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Curtis McNeill, 31, 920 Washington St. Apt. 2 and 22 N. 9th St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Felix Romero-Dejesus, 26, 1030 1/2 Elm St. and 332 N. 4th St., Rear Apt., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Mariano Cardona-Torres, 29, 711 Walnut St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Adam Minngia, 49, 703 Hillside Drive, Hamburg, Berks County, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--John Doe "Lebanon," age unknown, address unknown, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--John Doe "AB," age unknown, address unknown, is charged with one count of corrupt organizations, one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

Street Level Customers


--Jessica Sickafus, 24, 159 Tulpehocken St., Bernville, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Ashley Kettering
, 24, 4227 Hill Terrace Drive, Sinking Spring, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Stephanie DiPietro, 23, 228 West Walnut St., Tree Blandon, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Christina Habel, 22, 204 Nicole Drive, Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Chelsea Bell, 22, 331 S. 11th St., Reading and 1453 Claire Drive, Birdsboro, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Keith Becker, 53, 721 Cocalico Drive, Birdsboro, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Nikki Swisher, 20, 1339 Mineral Spring Ave., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Samuel Stumhofer, 37, 150 Upland Court, Hamburg, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Roni Fisher, 30, 327 Lombard St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Margaret Murphy, 36, 1517 Cotton St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Marie Castro, 40, 205 Oley St., Apt. 2, Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Cheuy Francisco, 22, 701 N. 10th St., rear apartment, Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Suliman Popal, 28, 30 Laurel Ave., Birdsboro, Berks County and 5760 Jefferson Drive, Exeter, Luzerne County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Ellen Waruszewski, 51, 3324 Rosedale Ave., Laureldale, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Anthony Koullias, 25, 1145 Penn Ave., Apt. 2, Wyomissing, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Israel Perez-Lopez, 28, 148 W. Oley St., Reading, Berks County, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--John Doe "Domino," age unknown, address unknown, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--John Doe "Frankie," age unknown, address unknown, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--John Doe, "Ralphie," age unknown, address unknown, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

--Jane Doe, age unknown, address unknown, is charged with one count of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

(A person charged with a crime is presumed innocent until proven guilty.)
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