State Police Intercept $500K of Cocaine in Lawrence

Massachusetts State Police and federal agents have confiscated $500,000 worth of cocaine they say was being delivered to Lawrence. The 11 kilos of cocaine was found in the SUV of a Lawrence warehouse owner, according to a statement released by State Police.

Officers and federal agents believed the drugs were being shipped from the Dominican Republic, through Florida, to Massachusetts. The intelligence they had said the cocaine was hidden in the sides of cardboard boxes.

From the State Police:

On Saturday, a task force of federal, state, and local officers set up surveillance of a produce. warehouse at 1 Broadway Street in Lawrence. The surveillance continued all day, throughout the night, and into Sunday. At approximately 9:30 a.m. Sunday surveillance teams observed the produce business’s owner, Miguel Betances, 60, and another man, later identified as Francisco Gonzalez, 50, pull up in a sport utility vehicle and enter the building. At around 11:40 a.m., Betances came out of the warehouse and backed his Toyota Highlander up to a loading dock. Both men were observed loading items into the back of the SUV.

The men then drove away in the SUV, at which time several units from the State Police Troop A Community Action Team converged on it and stopped it. A search of the vehicle yielded numerous packets of a substance believed to be cocaine concealed within two produce boxes. Simultaneously, task force officers executed a search warrant at the produce business, which was unoccupied. After securing the premises, a systematic search of nearly 600 boxes of produce revealed numerous additional packets of cocaine concealed within hiding spaces between walls of the boxes.

Betances and Gonzalez were arrested and charged with trafficking a Class B substance in excess of 200 grams and conspiracy to violate the Controlled Substances Act, according to police.


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