Huge Central Florida Cocaine and Heroin Trafficking Bust, 24 Charged
The Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation cracked a major drug case after concluding a lengthy investigation into two narcotic trafficking operations. They arrested and charged twenty-four suspects tied to illegal drug activity. Charges included racketeering, trafficking in heroin and cocaine, and weapons charges, among others.
The suspected leader of the trafficking scheme, 45-year-old Miguel Mercado, imported heroin and cocaine from Puerto Rico and used two groups to distribute the narcotics through east Orange County. He used the US Postal Service and private shipping companies to bring the illegal substances to the mainland.
Between them, the two groups smuggled up to 1,000 pouches of heroin and 500 of cocaine a week. For reference, one kilogram of pure heroin is worth about $60,000. The traffickers used a vehicle sales lot to hide illegal drug dealings. The cars at the lot were used to transport the drugs or to pay for them. Additionally, the suspects had a history of violent offenses and had stolen guns, including high-powered rifles, in their possession. Intel gathered during the investigation allowed authorities to prevent two apartment complex shootings and a kidnapping the suspects had planned.
Trying to Curb Central Florida’s Opioid Epidemic
Operation Night Watch takes a proactive approach to curb Central Florida’s opioid crisis. These arrests are a fraction of the Orange County Sheriff’s department’s efforts to get illegal narcotics out of the county. So far this year, as of November, Orange County experienced 1,000 overdoses. Of these, 69 were fatal. According to Sheriff Jerry Demings, many of the deadly overdoses took place in east Orange County and involved heroin.
Local police throughout Central Florida are on high alert for anyone suspected of committing narcotic offenses. Governor Rick Scott and more recently, the President, have declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency. The crisis is considered the deadliest drug crisis in American history, killing approximately 90 people each day.
A person faces stiff penalties, including hefty fines and lengthy mandatory minimum prison sentences for narcotic drug offenses in Orlando. Even if you have a prescription for a narcotic, if you fail to show proof at the time an officer searches you, you could face consequences. Do not hesitate to hire an aggressive, knowledgeable, and experienced attorney who serves the greater Orlando area to represent you in court.
William Umansky of The Umansky Law Firm is the attorney you seek. He has practiced criminal defense in Central Florida for over 25 years and is an active member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Recently, he was named a Top Criminal Lawyer by Orlando Home and Leisure Magazine. Call our office for a free consultation or chat with us live 24/7. We look forward to addressing your legal concerns.