Sixteen People Charged In Second Takedown Of Newark Drug Trafficking Organization
Total of 27 Individuals Charged to Date
NEWARK, N.J. – Sixteen people were charged today in connection with their alleged roles in a drug trafficking organization that distributed heroin and crack cocaine in Newark, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.
Anthony Brinson, 27; Kayron Caldwell, 26; Calvin Cheek, 47; Murad Fleming, 18; Sherod Green, 25; Furad Loyal, 30; Jaquwin Marlin, 30; Khalif Nash, 20; Zahir Nash, 19; Dimani Newby, 25; Nasir Sanders, 21; Shawn Scott, 32; Kahlid Windley, 31; Stephan Young, 19; all of Newark, and Jeray Alson, 28; of Vauxhall, New Jersey, are each charged by complaint with one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin. Loyal was additionally charged with one count of illegal possession of a firearm and one count of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. Sean Collins, 50, of East Orange, New Jersey, was charged with one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute 280 grams of more of cocaine base, or “crack” cocaine.
Nine of the defendants are currently in custody, six of whom – Cheek, Loyal, Marlin, Scott, Windley and Young – are scheduled to appear before U.S. Magistrate Judge Leda Dunn Wettre in Newark federal court today.
According to the documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
The defendants are allegedly members of a drug trafficking organization that sold heroin and crack cocaine in and around Newark, specifically Hayes Street and 14th Avenue in the area of the New Community Corp. (NCC) community development. The organization also supplied drugs to customers and other distributors elsewhere. The organization is comprised of members of the Brick City Brim set of the Bloods street gang
On March 5, 2018, 11 defendants, including Keith Herd, the alleged leader of the organization were charged in connection with the investigation. On Aug. 1, 2018, Martin Pettiford, 23, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute heroin. The charges against the other individuals remain pending.
The investigation revealed that in addition to selling narcotics, Herd and the other members of the organization alerted each other to police and rival gang member or drug dealer presence within NCC, shared narcotics supply, narcotics proceeds, and customers, and raised bail money for each other. Members of the organization have also engaged in violence and been the subject of violence in connection with their narcotics trafficking activities.
An investigation led by the FBI used physical and video surveillance, confidential informants, cooperating witnesses, dozens of controlled narcotics purchases, record checks, narcotics seizures, including of heroin, and multiple telephone wiretaps to uncover the operations of the drug trafficking organization.
The drug trafficking conspiracy counts carry a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum potential penalty of life in prison, and a $10 million fine. The illegal possession of a firearm count carries a maximum potential penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime count carries a mandatory minimum penalty of five years in prison, which must run consecutively to any other sentence imposed.
U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Gregory W. Ehrie in Newark, and members of the Newark Department of Public Safety, under the direction of Director Anthony F. Ambrose, with the investigation leading to the charges.
He also thanked the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, the Essex County Sheriff’s Office, the N.J. Department of Corrections, N.J. State Parole Board, and the U.S. Marshals for their assistance.
Keith Herd and the NCC drug trafficking organization were part of the original Violent Crime Initiative (VCI) targets. The VCI was formed in August 2017 by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey, the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, and the City of Newark’s Department of Public Safety for the sole purpose of combatting violent crime in and around the Newark. As part of this partnership, federal, state, county, and city agencies collaborate and pool resources to prosecute violent offenders who endanger the safety of the community. The VCI is comprised of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the FBI, the ATF, the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) New Jersey Division, the U.S. Marshals, the Newark Department of Public Safety, the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, the Essex County Sheriff’s Office, New Jersey State Parole, Union County Jail, New Jersey State Police Regional Operations and Intelligence Center/Real Time Crime Center, New Jersey Department of Corrections, the East Orange Police Department, and the Irvington Police Department.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Elaine K. Lou of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Criminal Division in Newark.
The charges and allegations contained in the complaints are merely accusations, and the defendants are considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.