A man was arrested after a search of a Bronx apartment allegedly uncovered over 250 pounds of heroin, cocaine, fentanyl and other hard drugs, prosecutors announced Wednesday.
Julio Mota Plasencia, 39, was charged with operating as a major trafficker, and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the first and third degrees. He was arraigned before the Manhattan Criminal Court and held without bail.
“It appears that this apartment served as the Amazon warehouse for lethal drugs in New York City and surrounding regions,” said Special Narcotics Prosecutor Bridget G. Brennan. “While this case is consistent with the trend towards high-level traffickers selling many different drug types, it is highly unusual to find such large amounts concentrated in one location.”
According to authorities, members of the New York OCDETF Strike Force obtained a search warrant for Mota Plasencia’s apartment, located at 112 Henwood Place on June 27. The strike force arrived at 6:55 p.m. and allegedly saw Mota Plasenciaun run to the rear of the third floor apartment. Agents and officers allegedly found him standing on a windowsill in the bedroom and allegedly found an open duffle bag that contained approximately 20 kilograms of narcotics nearby.
A search of the apartment allegedly uncovered drugs throughout the residence. Agents allegedly found a gym bag with 50,000 to 75,000 counterfeit pills that were blue in color and stamped “M-30” mimicking a commonly abused form of oxycodone, inside a closet near the apartment entrance. The pills are believed to contain fentanyl. A second closet in the apartment allegedly had two duffle bags containing 30 to 40 kilograms of narcotics and three ziplock bags of heroin, two of which were labeled “Cartel” and “Goma.” The closet also allegedly held four boxes of rifle ammunition, with a total of 80 rounds, that can also be used in certain handguns.
In the living room, agents allegedly uncovered a red cooler containing approximately 26 kilograms of cocaine, and a duffle bag containing cylindrical packages wrapped in plastic that are believed to have contained crystal meth, as well as a cardboard box with miscellaneous car parts and a kilogram of cocaine. A hamper in the hallway outside of the bedroom allegedly contained approximately three kilograms of cocaine, while another two kilograms of cocaine had been opened up on a kitchen counter as if it was being prepared for packaging.
Some of the packages were labeled with names such as Toyota and Audi, and an image of the Dockers logo. The drugs will be submitted for DEA laboratory analysis.
Agents and officers also allegedly found drug paraphernalia throughout the apartment, including a kilo press found in a suitcase; plates for a kilo press in a duffle bag; and scales, plastic gloves and other packaging materials. A drug ledger allegedly contained Mota Plasencia’s name and multiple dollar amounts, and agents found evidence of multiple aliases, including multiple forms of identification that had Mota Plasencia’s face and different names as well as a driver’s license from the Dominican Republic.
Mota Plasencia was arrested that night and taken into custody. The estimated value of the drugs found is $24 million.
“Data doesn’t lie, New York is under siege by criminal drug networks flooding our city streets with fentanyl, killing people at record rates,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Frank Tarentino. “This significant seizure proves that today’s traffickers have all the ingredients to make toxic cocktails for retail sales, deliberately blinding the users of what they are really getting. Through great teamwork among the New York Strike Force and NYC Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor, we have taken $24 million worth of deadly drugs off our streets.”
Bronx District Attorney Darcel D. Clark said, “This seizure illustrates what we are up against in the Bronx with traffickers bringing vast amounts of poisonous drugs that devastate communities here and in the metropolitan area. It is particularly disturbing that there was such a variety of dangerous drugs; fentanyl and crystal meth are especially destructive to people’s health. We will continue to work with local, state, and federal partners to target these traffickers and get these deadly drugs off our streets. I thank Special Narcotics Prosecutor Bridget G. Brennan and Frank A. Tarentino III, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA, for their partnership, as well as HSI, New York, NYPD and the New York State Police.”