The suspect owned and operated Chelo Grocery Store, which is located on Carroll Street in Paterson, NJ. According to law enforcement, the 49-year-old suspect used the business to distribute heroin.
When police learned of the alleged drug activity, they began an investigation into the suspect. At the conclusion of the month-long investigation, members of the Passaic County Sheriff s Office narcotics bureau conducted a raid at the grocery store.
During the raid, police officers reportedly found 250 glassines of heroin, as well as various drug paraphernalia that included thousands of empty glassines, digital scales, grinders, and rubber bands.
Police also seized $6,538 in cash that is believed to be the proceeds of illegal drug sales.
Additionally, it is believed that the suspect also used his car, an Infiniti FX 35, to distribute heroin throughout the area. A search of the vehicle allegedly turned up even more illegal drugs.
The suspect, who resides in Paterson, New Jersey, has been charged with possession of heroin, possession of heroin with intent to distribute, distribution of heroin near a school, maintaining a narcotics production facility, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
If the suspect is convicted on the heroin distribution charges, he faces severe criminal penalties. As set forth by N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5, anyone who manufactures, sells, or distributes more than five ounces of heroin can be charged with a first degree felony. A conviction for first degree heroin distribution could result in a sentence of 10-20 years in New Jersey State Prison.
For more information about this case, go to the NJ.com article, “Man Ran Heroin Production Facility out of Grocery Store, Cops Say.”