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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Jersey

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Two Men Admit Roles in Burlington County Drug Trafficking Organization

TRENTON, N.J. – Two members of an extensive drug-trafficking organization, including the leader of the organization, today admitted distributing large amounts of cocaine and crack cocaine throughout Burlington County, U.S. Attorney Philip Sellinger said.

Herbert Mays, 65, of Willingboro, New Jersey, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Zahid N. Quraishi in Trenton federal court to Counts One and Two of a superseding indictment charging him with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine and conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than 280 grams of crack cocaine.

Julius Thigpen, 60, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, another member of the same organization, pleaded guilty to a superseding information charging him with one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of cocaine.

Ten other members of the drug trafficking conspiracy – Andre Perkins, Brandon Watts, Craig Moore, John Petrovich, Mecca Grant, Nathaniel McCoy, Ronnie Dawson, Samantha Bolhert, Teron Huggins, and Tracy Williams – previously pleaded guilty. The charges against eight other defendants remain pending.

According to the documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

Between July 2019 and September 2019, the defendants and others engaged in a narcotics conspiracy that operated primarily in municipalities throughout Burlington County – including Willingboro, Burlington City, Burlington Township, Bordentown Township, and Edgewater Park – and which sought to profit from the distribution of cocaine and crack cocaine. Law enforcement officials learned that defendants obtained regular supplies of cocaine from co-conspirators in the Philadelphia area and elsewhere and then redistributed that cocaine, portions of which defendants converted into crack cocaine, for profit, to other conspirators, distributors, sub-dealers, and end users throughout Burlington County and elsewhere. Law enforcement officials intercepted numerous communications by and between the conspirators regarding such issues as cocaine and crack cocaine quality and availability, pricing, packaging, quantity, and customer satisfaction.

The counts to which Mays pleaded guilty each carry a mandatory penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum potential penalty of a life in prison, and up to a $10 million fine. The count to which Thipgen pleaded guilty carries a mandatory penalty of five years in prison, a maximum potential penalty of 40 years in prison, and up to a $5 million fine. Sentencing for both defendants is scheduled for July 20, 2022.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the FBI, Newark Field Office, Trenton Resident Agency, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr.; special agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Newark Field Division, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey L. Matthews; detectives of the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Scott Coffina; officers of the Burlington Township Police Department, under the direction of Director of Public Safety Bruce Painter; officers of the Willingboro Police Department, under the direction of Director of Public Safety Ian Bucs; officers of the Burlington City Police Department, under the direction of Chief John Fine; officers of the Florence Police Department, under the direction of Chief Brian Boldizar; officers of the Bordentown Township Police Department, under the direction of Chief Brian Pesce; officers of the Edgewater Park Police Department, under the direction of Chief Robert Hess; officers of the Ewing Police Department, under the direction of Chief Albert Rhodes; officers of the Westampton Police Department, under the direction of Chief Stephen Ent; officers of the Trenton Police Department, under the direction of Director Steve Wilson with the investigation leading to today’s guilty pleas.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Martha K. Nye of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Criminal Division in Trenton and Andrew B. Johns of the Criminal Division in Camden.

The charges and allegations contained in the complaints against the eight remaining defendants are merely accusations, and they are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Component(s): 
Press Release Number: 
22-096
Updated March 15, 2022