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Major drug ring busted in Berks County

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Arrest warrants were served early this morning for twenty-five people accused of operating a major drug operation in Berks County.  The suspects, described as mid-to-high-level individuals within the ring, were charged with committing Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances (Cocaine, Marijuana, and Heroin), Dealing in Proceeds of Unlawful Activity, Corrupt Organizations and Criminal Use of Communication Facility.

The investigation began in July 2012. Information revealed the individuals were distributing Cocaine, Heroin, and Marijuana in a major drug operation throughout Berks County.  As a result, the Berks County Drug Task Force joined forces with the FBI, the Pennsylvania State Police, and Drug Task Force members from Reading, Exeter Township and Spring Township Police Departments.

The investigation centered-around Robert Sanfiel, but as it progressed, other suspects were developed.  After detectives discovered probable cause, District Attorney Adams made application to the PA Superior Court for the non-consensual wire and electronic interception of the Sanfiel Drug Trafficking Organization’s cellular telephones.  Detectives utilized the court authorized wire taps as the primary tool in the investigation.  The wire tap began in February 2013 and detectives listened to the criminal activity being conducted for approximately a four-month period.

During the investigation, detectives identified twenty-five (25) individuals that were active members of the organization.

During the investigation, undercover purchases were made and 8 search warrants were served at the following locations:

 

  • 904 Byram Street, Lower Alsace
  • 304 North 5th Street, Reading
  • 306 North 5th Street, Reading
  • 310 North 5th Street, Reading
  • 243 Reed Street, Reading
  • 39 North Calias Drive, Lower Alsace
  • 315 North 3rd Street (garage), Reading
  • One vehicle operated by Arvell Bullock, Reading

 

As a result of the search warrants, the following items were seized:

 

  • 3 kilograms of Cocaine with a street value of $300,000 (based on $100 per/gram)
  • 250 grams of Heroin with a street value of $75,000 (based on $300 per/gram)
  • Cutting agents
  • Drug-related paraphernalia associated with the distribution of controlled substances
  • Over $50,000 in cash
  • Three hand-guns and sawed-off shotgun
  • Various electronic equipment
  • One vehicle with a hidden trap to conceal contraband

If convicted, these defendants face a substantial period of incarceration and fines in excess of $100,000.

“The success of dismantling this drug trafficking operation could only have been accomplished with the cooperative combined teamwork of local, county, state and federal law enforcement agencies.  Today, we send a message to the drug dealers of our community that we will use every available law enforcement resource to bring them to justice.”

So far, a total of nineteen of the twenty-five individuals have been apprehended during the early-morning round-up.  Those nineteen individuals were arrested and transported to the Berks County Sheriff’s Department Central Processing Center for processing and arraignment.

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