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For Immediate Release:  
For Further Information Contact:
September 6, 2005

Office of The Attorney General
- Peter C. Harvey, Attorney General
Division of Criminal Justice
- Vaughn L. McKoy, Director

 

John R. Hagerty
609-984-1936


 

Attorney General's "Gangs, Guns & Drugs" Initiative Targets Trenton "Bloods" Gang and Cocaine Trade
"Operation Capital City" Yields 16 Arrests by Division of Criminal Justice, Trenton P.D., Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, U.S. DEA & Other Agencies

 

>> See Operation Capital City Defendant List (below release)

TRENTON - Attorney General Peter C. Harvey and Division of Criminal Justice Director Vaughn L. McKoy today announced that 16 individuals, including reputed local leaders and members of the violent "Bloods" street gang, have been arrested on drug and racketeering charges as part of a six-month investigation targeting a multi-kilo, multi-million dollar cocaine distribution network based in Trenton. More arrests are expected in the ongoing investigation.

According to the Attorney General, the arrests and charges resulted from an extensive joint-agency investigation stemming from the Attorney General’s "Gangs, Guns and Drugs" initiative. The investigation was led by the New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice, the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, the Trenton Police Department, and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), with assistance from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, Mercer County Sheriff’s Department, Hamilton Township Police Department, and New Jersey National Guard.

"Through this concerted multi-agency operation, we have arrested the reputed leader and key members of Trenton’s largest powder cocaine distribution network - a network linked to the Bloods street gang," said Attorney General Harvey. "Gang violence is turning our communities into firing ranges, as we saw here in Trenton on August 28, when gang-related shootings claimed the lives of two people, including a young woman struck by a stray bullet while sitting on her porch. By taking down the leadership of these gangs, we are hoping to make the streets of this city safer for everyone."

Joining Criminal Justice Director McKoy to announce the arrests and details of the investigation were Deputy United States Attorney Lee A. Solomon; Michael Pasterchick, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) - New Jersey Division; Mercer County Prosecutor Joseph L. Bocchini Jr.; Chief State Investigator Anne Kriegner, Division of Criminal Justice; Director Joseph Santiago, Trenton Police Department; Col. John Sheard, New Jersey National Guard; Mercer County Sheriff Kevin Larkin; Luis A. Valentin, Monmouth County Prosecutor; and representatives of other federal, state, county, and municipal law enforcement agencies.

"This is an example of the outstanding results that can be achieved when agencies work together to attack the scourge of drugs and the activities of drug gangs responsible for increased violence associated with illegal drug distribution," said Criminal Justice Director McKoy. "After identifying Omar Aikens as an alleged multi-kilo cocaine distributer in Trenton, the Division of Criminal Justice-led law enforcement coalition took the investigation to the streets of Trenton, where we snared other gang members in his distribution network. The investigation tracked to Texas, where federal authorities continued the investigation by targeting Aiken’s alleged cocaine supplier."

"This is a serous blow to the sub-culture of violent gangs and drug dealers that have become more and more brazen in Trenton," said U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Christie. "We talk a lot about what can happen when law enforcement cooperates, but this truly is an optimum result: local, state, and federal officers and prosecutors sharing investigative information, taking down and charging defendants under federal and state law, getting drug dealers, gang members and guns off the streets."

"Operation Capital City began as a result of the escalating gang violence in Trenton. Because of the rapport developed between federal, state, county, and local law enforcement agencies through our Violent Crime Interdiction Task Force, Operation Capital City was a success. Law enforcement agencies are improving their communication, sharing information, and working together toward the common goal of removing the scourge of violent criminal gangs from our streets," said Mercer County Prosecutor Bocchini. "The Mercer County Chiefs of Police Association has recognized that gang activity knows no boarders and has committed substantial resources to this fight. As a county and a law enforcement community, Mercer is committed to making our streets safe for law abiding citizens and their families. I urge citizens to report gang activity because only in a true law enforcement and community partnership can we be successful."

"We will continue to provide federal resources to our state and local law enforcement partners in order to dismantle and eliminate violent drug trafficking organizations," said DEA Special Agent- In-Charge Pasterchick. "The cooperation between agencies was paramount to the success of this criminal organization being significantly eradicated."

"The commitment of the Trenton Police Department to combat the drug epidemic and the gang
problem that we are being confronted with has been a priority of our department," Director Santiago said. "Operation Capital City" has only demonstrated the commitment and resolve of our City to eradicate the drug and gang situation that is affecting the daily lives of our citizens."

"The participating agencies have worked very hard on this investigation because we know what is at stake," said Chief State Investigator Kriegner. "Violent street gangs pose a threat to all Trenton residents, not just gang members. We hope these arrests will reduce the violence on Trenton’s streets and improve the quality of life for its residents."

Three Trenton residents - considered the leaders and violent members of the alleged drug distribution network - were arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit racketeering and distribution of a controlled dangerous substance (cocaine) on Aug. 29. The lead defendants are identified in arrest warrants as:

  • Omar Aikens, 25, Oak Lane, Trenton, Mercer County, reputed to be Trenton’s largest cocaine distributer and area leader of the "Sex, Money, Murder" faction of the "Bloods" street gang, was arrested on federal drug charges. Aikens was held without bail and remanded to federal custody after a bail hearing before U. S. Magistrate John Hughes on Thurs., Sept. 1;
  • Bernard Green, a/k/a. Petey Black, 23, Old Rose Street, Trenton, Mercer County, reputed area leader of the "Gangster Killer Bloods" faction of the Bloods. Green was previously charged with attempted homicide in connection with gang-related shootings in Trenton on Aug. 28, and;
  • Jerome Roberts, 35, Chestnut Street, Trenton, Mercer County. Roberts was arrested on state drug distribution and racketeering charges.

Thirteen additional gang members were arrested in coordinated raids on Friday, Sept. 2. Five other individuals – two already in custody on unrelated charges and three who remain fugitives – were charged Friday with drug offenses as a result of the operation. Assisting in the execution of search and arrest warrants on Sept. 2 were the New Jersey State Police Troop "C" TEAMS unit and the Washington Township, Hopewell Township, Princeton Township and Princeton Borough police departments.

According to Criminal Justice Director McKoy, the investigation focused on the alleged drug distribution activities of Aikens who allegedly obtained powder cocaine from a Mexican drug cartel through a supplier based near Houston, Texas. The supplier allegedly sent cocaine to Aikens in packages of five to ten kilograms via overnight mail or via drug couriers who used public transportation. A kilo of powder cocaine has a street value of roughly $50,000.

On a number of occasions, Operation Capital City assisted in directing law enforcement to areas in Trenton where gang violence was reported to be imminent, thereby preventing violence. In addition, working with the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Homicide Unit, the cooperating agencies developed critical information regarding four homicides in Trenton.

In June, Green was arrested and, while in custody, threatened a Trenton police officer and his family. Investigators subsequently alerted area law enforcement agencies of the danger of gang-related retaliation against police officers by members of this drug network.

In connection with the investigation, authorities have seized cocaine with a street value of nearly $1 million, more than $285,000 in cash and bank accounts, $200,000 in jewelry, seven vehicles, and numerous weapons, including a .45-caliber Thompson submachine gun, a 9 mm Intratec TEC 9 semi-automatic pistol, two shotguns, two rifles and seven handguns.

Criminal Justice Director McKoy commended the dedicated efforts of all of the investigators, including Supervising State Investigator Allan Buecker, State Investigator Brian Kiely and State Investigator Tim Savage of the Division of Criminal Justice; Lt. William Straniero and Detective Michael Novembre of the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office; Lt. Daniel Pagnotta Jr. and Detective Gary Britton of the Trenton Police Department; Special Agent Eric Brown of the DEA; Deputy Chief Guy McCormack and Capt. Brian Rubino, Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office.

Criminal Justice Director McKoy noted that many of the cases will be presented to the State Grand Jury for indictment, while other cases will be prosecuted by the Mercer County Prosecutor’s office and/or by the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Assistant Attorney General Terry Merced and Deputy Attorney General Frank M. Gennaro assigned to the Division of Criminal Justice - Major Narcotics Bureau coordinated the ongoing investigation and prosecution.
In announcing the arrests, Criminal Justice Director McKoy noted that the Attorney General’s Office - Division of Criminal Justice is coordinating a statewide law enforcement initiative targeting illegal drug distribution and gang activities across the state. The "Gangs, Guns & Drugs" initiative centers on the deployment of State Investigators from the Division of Criminal Justice working with numerous federal, state, county and local law enforcement agencies.
In the interest of investigative security and pursuant to established court requirements, the Attorney General’s Office, the Division of Criminal Justice, and the other law enforcement agencies involved are limited in discussing specific details regarding the ongoing investigation and the alleged conspiracies. All persons charged in criminal complaints are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

A list of the individuals arrested and the charges filed is attached to this press release. Additional information is available via the Division of Criminal Justice Web Page at www.NJDCJ.org.


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Operation Capital City Defendant List

  1. Gary G. Ainsley, aka "G" 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    17 Newell Avenue Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ In custody - $50,000 Bail
    DOB: 12/29/78 Gang Member - "Sex, Money Murder" Bloods
  2. Carlos Berry aka "Los" 2C:35-5a(1) and 2C:35-5b(1) Distribution of a CDS
    310 Brinton Avenue 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    Trenton, NJ Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    DOB: 9/5/72 2C:41-1 Racketeering
    In Custody - $250,000 Bail
    Gang Member - "Gangster Killer Blood (GKB)" Bloods
  3. Jermel Carter aka "Hood" 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    491 Stuyvesant Avenue Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ In custody - $50,000 Bail
    DOB: 9/3/82 Gang Member- "Sex, Money Murder" Bloods
  4. Shawn T. Davis aka "Little" 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    65 Christoph Street Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ In custody - $50,000 Bail
    DOB: 7/12/75
  5. Ronnie Elder 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    113 Anderson Street Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ 2C:41-1 Racketeering
    DOB: 7/9/73 In custody - $500,000 bail
  6. Mark Feggans 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    41 Harding Street Racketeering, Distribution of a CDS, and weapons
    Ewing Twp, NJ violations
    DOB: 9/2/77 In custody - $100,000 bail
  7. Jermaine Gibson 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    138 Hoffman Avenue Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ
    DOB: 6/4/72
  8. Rasheen Hollins aka "New York Rob" 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    211 Perry Street Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ
    DOB: 5/29/79
  9. Demetrius Lewis aka "Bleek" 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    29 Ellsworth Avenue Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ
    DOB: 12/3/83
    Gang member - "Sex, Money Murder" Bloods
  10. Frankie Mack 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    225 Beechwood Avenue, Apt. 108 Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ In custody - $50,000 bail
    DOB: 7/23/63
  11. Melvin Marrero 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    342 Tulip Street Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Browns Mills, NJ
    DOB: 9/26/74
  12. Kenneth Miller 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    141 S. Cook Avenue Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ In custody - $250,000 bail
    DOB: 10/6/70
  13. Daniel Sabree 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    9071 Mill Creek Road Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Levittown, PA In custody - $50,000 bail
    DOB: 3/15/74
  14. Darnell Thomas aka "New York" 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    278 Hillcrest Avenue Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ
    DOB: 1/17/78
  15. Dwayne L. Thomas aka "Wiz" 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    1324 Edgewood Avenue Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ In custody - $50,000 bail
    DOB: 9/27/91
  16. Eugene Thomas, aka "Cat Daddy" 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    440 Stuyvesant Avenue Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ In custody - $50,000 bail
  17. Ronald Warren 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    630 West State Street Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ In custody - $50,000 bail
    DOB: 4/14/45
  18. Ronnie Wright 2C:5-2 and 2C:41-2(d) Conspiracy to commit
    418 Wilfred Avenue Racketeering and Distribution of a CDS
    Trenton, NJ In custody - $100,000 bail
    DOB: 3/15/74

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