DEA TASK FORCE OPERATION IN
NORWALK RESULTS IN THREE ARRESTS
David B. Fein, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, and Kevin Lane, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration in New England, today announced that three individuals were arrested yesterday in Norwalk on cocaine and heroin distribution charges. In association with the arrests, law enforcement seized large amounts of narcotics and cash, as well as two firearms.
According to court documents and statements made in court, on March 27, 2012, New York Police Department officers conducting a narcotics trafficking investigation contacted the Drug Enforcement Administration in Bridgeport with information that individuals operating out of 18-20 Taylor Avenue and 20 Woodbury Avenue in Norwalk had just received a multiple-kilogram shipment of cocaine. Based upon this information, on the morning of March 28, members of the DEA Bridgeport High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force and the Norwalk Police Department’s Special Services Division executed a court-authorized search of 20 Woodbury Avenue and encountered HECTOR VALLE, JOSE MENDEZ-LUNA and EDUARDO VILLEGAS. Inside one bedroom of the residence, officers located a 9-millimeter firearm, a magazine with four rounds of ammunition and approximately 275 grams of suspected cocaine powder. Inside another bedroom occupied by VALLE, officers located several individual baggies of suspected cocaine, approximately $8,000 in cash, five to eight grams of raw heroin, and numerous suspected drug ledgers. In addition, approximately one ounce of heroin was located in the kitchen.
A subsequent court-authorized search of 18-20 Taylor Avenue yielded approximately five kilograms of heroin, 10 pounds of Methamphetamine, $279,000 in cash, one handgun, ammunition, and narcotics packaging materials.
VALLE, MENDEZ-LUNA and VILLEGAS, whose true identities are still being determined, have been charged by federal criminal complaint with possession with intent to distribute, and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, cocaine and heroin. Each of the charges carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years and a fine up to $1 million.
The defendants appeared yesterday before United States Magistrate Judge Holly B. Fitzsimmons in Bridgeport. All are currently detained.
U.S. Attorney Fein stressed that a complaint is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. Charges are only allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This case is being investigated by Drug Enforcement Administration’s Bridgeport High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force, which is composed of members of the Bridgeport, Milford, Norwalk, Stamford, Stratford and Westport Police Departments. The investigation was significantly assisted by the Norwalk Police Department’s Special Services Division.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Sarah Karwan and Vanessa Richards.
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