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25 arrested in Ocean County drug trafficking operation

More than two dozen New Jersey residents have been implicated in a drug ring in Ocean County. The group of defendants includes one police dispatcher and another individual who is employed by an area school district. The drug charges are the result of an investigation that involved at least 13 local police departments, along with federal, state and county agencies. The national Drug Enforcement Agency and United States Postal Service were heavily involved in the investigation, which traced drug trafficking along the East Coast and to several Pacific states.

The postal service was reportedly used to transport drugs throughout the region. Investigators said this allowed the alleged drug ring to continue operation because of a smaller chance of detection.

A massive amount of paraphernalia, drugs, weapons and cash was seized in connection with the large bust. Homes throughout Ocean, Essex, Monmouth and Mercer counties were searched, yielding $91,000 in cash, along with numerous firearms and various drugs. Those substances included marijuana, steroids, narcotics, MDMA, LSD, prescription pills and hashish, according to investigators. In addition, authorities seized more than $70,000 from a bank account and 15 vehicles.

According to authorities, a 25-year-old man was the supposed kingpin of the distribution network, which also allegedly included a police dispatcher who would warn her daughter about pending police raids.

Media reports have not included information about bond amounts or formal charges for any of the defendants currently in custody. These will likely be very serious charges the defendants are facing, and the charges might even be filed in federal court. They will need an experienced, skilled attorney to provide them with legal representation so their rights are protected and so they understand all of their options and how the case will proceed.

Source: Associated Press, "Police dispatcher, school employee among 25 charged as N.J. drug ring is busted," April 8, 2013

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