The New York State Police recently announced a massive drug sweep that took place in Upstate's Onondaga and Oswego counties, which includes Syracuse and its surroundings. After an 11-month investigation, authorities say that they have indicted over 72 people on drug charges, all of whom were allegedly involved in the heroin and cocaine trade in those locations. They say that they seized over 10,750 small bags filled with heroin that were ready to sell on the street.
State authorities also claim to have seized more than a pound of cocaine, oxycodone and hydrocodone pills. The drugs were allegedly brought from New York City and distributed in the aforementioned communities. Also taken in the raids were two handguns, an electric stun gun, rifles and about $40,000 in cash.
The New York State Police superintendent stated that the effort was focused on stopping the inflow of drugs from New York City. About seven people have also been charged with violations of the "major trafficker" statute, which authorities described as the most serious drug charge that exists in New York state. These individuals allegedly ran the drug rings that were disrupted.
The ringleaders could face life in prison, according to the police. Police in Upstate New York communities admitted that there are still offenders that they are trying to track down. They called this effort one that will make a "big difference." The main goal of criminal defense lawyers in defending a client on drug charges that are part of a mass sweep is to focus on the individual's participation. Hopefully, it will be peripheral, making the accused a borderline offender. If that argument reasonably prevails, a plea bargain with a reduced sentence will be likely in several of the cases.
Source: twcnews.com, "Authorities Arrest Dozens of Heroin, Cocaine Dealers", Iris St. Meran, May 17, 2016