For the second time in a little more than a month, Philadelphia police have busted suspected associates of a Dominican-led heroin distribution network for using a Northeast residence as a drug-packaging site.
Members of the Narcotics Field Unit-North raided an apartment house on the 6400 block of Everett St. in Castor Gardens last Thursday, arrested two people and confiscated heroin worth almost $38,000, said Sgt. Bob Friel.
Officer Brian Myers and his partners were conducting surveillance on the Everett Street house that afternoon when they allegedly saw a resident, Gregorio Lazala, and another man taking part in “a narcotics transaction,” Friel said.
The officers detained and searched Lazala, 51, and Ramon Mena, 49. Lazala was carrying 28 small packets of heroin labeled “High Octane,” as well as $631 cash, Friel said, while Mena was carrying 10 grams of heroin in a baggie, along with empty packets and drug stamps with the “HIGH” label.
After obtaining a search warrant for the basement apartment, officers allegedly found 102 grams of bulk heroin in a bedroom desk, 94 small packets of heroin stamped with various labels, drug packaging, a scale and various unused stamps.
They also found a .40-caliber handgun with four rounds of ammunition, drug grinders, transaction records and chemicals used to mix and cut bulk quantities of heroin, Friel said.
Lazala and Mena were charged with drug possession, drug possession with intent to deliver, conspiracy and possessing drug paraphernalia.
Mena’s residence of record on the 1500 block of Marcy Place in the Scotchbrook section of Bustleton is about 100 yards from a house where the same Narcotics Field Unit arrested five men and seized about $435,000 worth of heroin on May 31. That raid occurred on the 1500 block of Stoney Lane.
Investigators believe that the drugs seized in both raids were destined for street-corner sale in the police department’s East Division, which includes parts of North Philadelphia and Kensington. ••EndFragment