Nassau DA Singas announces heroin ring bust

Janelle Clausen
Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas, flanked by officials, announces the indictment of several individuals in a Long Island heroin ring. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)

Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced the indictment of 36 people allegedly involved in a heroin ring on Tuesday, putting it among the largest narcotics takedowns in Long Island history.

Singas described a three-tiered network featuring three suppliers known as “papis,” 15 distributors known as the “110 Crew” and 18 independent re-sellers capable of flooding the region with heroin. They primarily operated along Route 110 in Nassau and Suffolk counties.

“These dealers and re-sellers operated like a well-run business,” Singas added, saying that they had turned Route 110 into “their own personal heroin highway.”

Officials said that conservatively the 110 Crew sold around 4,000 small bags of heroin per week, valued between $40,000 and $50,000 total. They also said the group’s openness showed how routine heroin use is on Long Island.

“Drug dealing networks usually operate in the shadows and conduct their business behind closed doors,” Singas said, “but this group allegedly counted cash, measured and packaged heroin in broad daylight, while parked in luxury cars on residential streets.”

The three “papis” were Elvin “Fling” Rosario, 27, of Copaigue, Reinardo “Tito” Adames, 28, of West Babylon and another unnamed individual. Officials said that others arrested spanned the Island, coming from places including Bellmore, Levittown, Islip Terrace, Mattituck, West Babylon, East Meadow, Bay Shore, Farmingdale, Dix Hills, Massapequa, Uniondale and East Northport. Their ages ranged from 18 to 52.

An official gestures to a sampling of the weapons found in the investigation. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)
An official gestures to a sampling of the weapons found in the investigation. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)

As of Tuesday, search warrants turned up an AK-47, three shotguns, a stun gun, a pistol grip rifle and at least $50,000 in currency.  Five thousand bags of heroin, 18 cars and a few ounces of cocaine were seized.

So far, six of the defendants indicted have been charged with operating as major traffickers. That is a felony that carries a 15-year to life sentence. Other charges in the 59-count indictment included criminal sale and possession of a controlled substance and conspiracy.

Three defendants allegedly stored drugs at homes in Farmingdale, Lindenhurst, West Babylon and Bay Shore. The investigations also found that at least one fatality and 20 near-fatal overdoses were linked to the heroin sales, officials said.

“What the indictment can’t show is what harm this distribution network and the deadly poisons they sold has inflicted on hundreds of people in our communities,” Singas said.

The arrests were a result of a nine-month investigation by the Nassau County district attorney’s office, the Nassau County Police Department, Suffolk County Police Department, New York State Police, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Suffolk County sheriff’s office.

The investigation was named “Operation Bundle Up” in reference to the quantity of heroin bundles allegedly sold.

“Today’s arrests culminate an intense multi-jurisdictional investigation with the Long Island Heroin Task Force to eradicate drugs and those who sell them from our neighborhoods,” Nassau County Police Commissioner Thomas Krumpter said.

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