Onondaga County Sheriff Kevin E. Walsh this morning reported that members of the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force made several arrests and confiscated a large amount of Heroin, US Currency, and several firearms.

 As part of an High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force Initiative, members of the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office Special Investigations Unit in conjunction with agents from the DEA, and narcotics enforcement officers from the Syracuse Police, United States Border Patrol, Homeland Security, New York State Police, and the Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office, concluded a several month investigation into a major heroin trafficking organization in the City of Syracuse and Onondaga County.

Several search warrants were executed in the City of Syracuse and the Town of Clay that resulted in the recovery of over 20 ounces of heroin packaged in over 18,000 individual packets, $10,000 in cash, and 3 illegal handguns. In all, 14 defendants were arrested for felony gun and drug charges and are currently incarcerated at the Justice Center. The heroin recovered had a street value of approximately $200,000.

DEA Special Agent in Charge Brian R. Crowell stated, “There has been a 106% increase in the number of people dependent on heroin within the last year, and our primary focus is to bring justice to those responsible for distributing this poison. This organization epitomizes the flow of heroin from New York City suppliers to druggangs throughout the Northeast sending heroin in individually packaged bundles for a quick sale throughout our communities. The DEA and our law enforcement partners will never tolerate the consequences of heroin distribution and use-addiction, increased crime, violence, health care costs, and overdose deaths. I commend the men and woman from the NYSP, Syracuse Police Department, Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office, and the DEA Task Force who worked tirelessly to make our communities safer from these heroin traffickers.”