Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy D. Sini announced Thursday that a drug trafficking ring based in Riverhead -- which investigators say also sold cocaine and other illegal substances in the Hamptons and in Brookhaven Town -- has been busted, landing 12 people in court -- including two alleged members of the 18th Street gang.
The East End Drug Task Force and the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations team helped break up the ring using undercover officers, court-authorized eavesdropping, and multiple methods of surveillance, according to a press release from Mr. Sini's office.
"This was a multi-agency effort that resulted in the takedown of major drug traffickers selling crack cocaine and powder cocaine, and doing so in a way that was terrorizing the community," Mr. Sini said in a statement. "They were selling in front of retail establishments and in public areas, and the people selling those drugs were dangerous gang members. This dealt a major blow to drug dealing going on in the Riverhead area and throughout the East End of Long Island."
The investigation concluded that the dealers were raking in about $75,000 per month in sales of cocaine and other drugs. Officers executed search warrants at seven locations on Thursday, seizing approximately 300 grams of cocaine, 50 pills of ecstasy (MDMA), seven grams of methamphetamine, a handgun, and approximately $70,000 in cash. The agents also seized half a kilogram of cocaine over the course of the investigation, which began in July of 2020.
Five of the defendants were indicted Friday, each charged with multiple counts of operating as a major trafficker, a Class A-I felony. They are Deris Denilo Matamoros Alvarado, 35, of Riverhead, who is known as Derry; Marvin Javier Ruiz Pas, 39, of Centereach, whose alias is Pulga; Kennedi Octavio Gonzalez Paiz, 37, of Riverhead, known as Kenni; Elvin Naun Bonilla Morales, 39, of Southampton, a.k.a. Elvito, and Marvin Javier Bonilla Morales, 33, of Southampton. Each also faces a few additional felony charges such as conspiracy and criminal sale and possession of a controlled substance.
Four other defendants were indicted Friday. They are Christopher Emmanuel Millan Marin, 35, of Riverhead, a.k.a. Cuervo; Brian Jefferson Toro Maldonado, 27, of Mastic, a.k.a. Torro; Wilmer Wilfredo Godoy Chacon, 34, of Westhampton, and Jose Robert Alvarado Romero, 40, of Riverhead, who also goes by Robertito. They are each charged with three felony conspiracy counts; Mr. Alvarado Romero is also charged with second-degree criminal facilitation, a felony.
Mr. Sini said three additional defendants have yet to be arraigned. In a statement, Southampton Town Police Chief Steven Skrynecki pledged to continue using Southampton Town Police Department resources to fight drug trafficking. The East End Drug Task Force also includes officers from East Hampton Town, Riverhead Town, and Southampton Village.
"This case once again underscores the persistence of dangerous drug traffickers in our area and the need for coordinated law enforcement action to stop them," Chief Skrynecki said. "These defendants put our residents at high risk through the deadly products they peddle and the methods of their operations."