HARRISBURG — Attorney General Josh Shapiro today announced that his strategic response team seized more than 44 pounds of heroin, fentanyl, crystal methamphetamine, cocaine and other drugs during a five-month deployment in Lackawanna and Luzerne Counties. Investigators estimate the total street value of the seizures to be more than $535,000.
Working in close collaboration with Lackawanna County District Attorney Mark Powell and Luzerne County District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis, Office of Attorney General Agents made over 50 drug-related arrests in northeast Pennsylvania between March 2018 and August 2018. In addition, they seized heroin and fentanyl worth nearly $300,000.
“The people of Lackawanna and Luzerne Counties are fed up with this heroin and opioid epidemic. We hear you, and we’re taking action,” Attorney General Josh Shapiro said. “Thanks to strong law enforcement collaboration with District Attorneys Salavantis and Powell, my office has taken almost $300,000 of heroin and fentanyl off northeastern Pennsylvania streets in the past five months. We are doing whatever it takes to get these drug dealers and their poisons out of our communities.”
The investigation led to the execution of 20 search warrants in the northeast Pennsylvania area, which contributed to the significant drug seizures. Attorney General Shapiro praised law enforcement collaboration, in particular the support of the two local District Attorneys, for the success of the recent deployment.
“We’re grateful to have the cooperation of the Attorney General. Every cooperative effort to combat this crime makes law enforcement stronger and our communities safer,” said Luzerne County District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis. “We’re greatly looking forward to continuing to work with Attorney General Shapiro’s administration to continue our mission of making neighborhoods safer for Luzerne County families.”
“We are in a war to rid our communities of deadly opioids and other illegal drugs, so we always appreciate any additional boots on the ground from Attorney General Shapiro’s office,” said Lackawanna County District Attorney Mark Powell.
In addition to drugs and pills, Agents also seized 14 illegal firearms and two vehicles as a result of the investigations. Due to the confidential nature of the Strategic Response Team’s investigations, the Office of Attorney General cannot reveal its next deployments.