A group of law enforcement agencies dubbed “Operation Justice Served”, consisting of many federal, state, county, and local officials, arrested 42 individuals over the last month for their involvement in a drug trafficking network.
Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni announced that the arrests were connected to a distribution network operating out of Freehold, New Jersey. The charges include possession and distribution of a number of different controlled substances including: heroin, cocaine, marijuana, and prescription pain medications classified as opiates, such as Oxycodone and Percocet.
“The joint efforts of these multiple law enforcement agencies involved in OPERATION JUSTICE SERVED have accomplished the mission of taking down this local drug trafficking network responsible for bringing drugs into the county and threatening quality of life and the safety of residents.” Gramiccioni said.
Law enforcement officials began their investigation approximately 5 months ago, when they identified and closely monitored drug sales made by Kenneth Crooms, 44, of Bowne Avenue, Freehold Borough. Soon after the investigation began, 12 additional individuals were identified as being involved in activity related to the drug distribution of Mr. Crooms and/or selling the narcotics themselves.
In total, of the 46 people charged 42 have been apprehended as a part of conspiracies to sell and possess drugs in Freehold, NJ. These arrests, in the County Seat of Freehold, have revealed that the network was bringing in and distributing approximately 2,500 bags of heroin and 200 grams of cocaine each week. The seizures alone, included in all 42 arrests, totaled more than 2,700 bags of heroin, 300 grams of cocaine, 16 ounces of marijuana, and 10’s, possibly 100’s, of prescription pills intended to be sold across Monmouth County and the surrounding areas.
Monmouth County Drug Distribution Charges
Crooms, along with at least 12 additional individuals, including Newman Davis, resided out of Freehold, Manalapan, or Bayonne. They face the following charges:
- Two counts of second degree distribution of controlled dangerous substances and possession of controlled dangerous substances: heroin and cocaine.
- Two counts each of third degree distribution and possession with intent to distribute controlled dangerous substances: marijuana and pain medications.
- One count of second degree conspiracy to distribute these drugs.
At least three of the individuals remain at large at this time.
Freehold Drug Possesion Charges
Authorities have charged an additional 28 individuals for regularly meeting and buying narcatics from both Kenneth Crooms or Newman Davis. Each of the buyers were charged and are facing third degree possession of controlled dangerous substances and third degree conspiracy to possess controlled dangerous substances.
Penalties for Drug Crimes in New Jersey
If convicted of these charges, the potential penalties can range from fines and community service up to 20 years in prison. Any first degree charges carry a potential sentence of 10 to 20 years in a New Jersey State Prison. If the defendants are convicted of the second degree offenses, they are facing 5 to 10 years in state prison and a third degree conviction can carry a potential 3 to 5 year sentence in state prison.
All charges are very serious and can bring with them life changing consequences. The legal process in all circumstances can be confusing and difficult to navigate without an experienced criminal defense attorney by your side. If you or someone you love have been charged with drug related offenses such as distribution, possession, or leader of a drug trafficking ring it is advisable that you enlist an experienced defense attorney that appears in Freehold courts and all courts across Monmouth County, including Red Bank, Eatontown, and Middletown. Make sure that your rights are protected every step of the way.
For additional information pertaining to this case, please visit the following article 46 people charged in massive county-wide drug bust, authorities say.