PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The U.S. Attorney’s Office made a big announcement Friday morning, saying it would be handing down indictments for 40 suspects in a drug trafficking ring.
It spans four states, but was operated out of a Pittsburgh neighborhood.
U.S. Attorney David Hickton would not name the mastermind behind the ring, nor the location of that person, but he did say the drug operation was centered in Homewood.
“These individuals were responsible for distributing large quantities of heroin, cocaine and crack cocaine in our communities,” Hickton said.
It isn’t exactly the kind of Kodak moment one would want, but it was just what the US attorney had in mind after a two-year-long investigation made up of a task force of federal, state and local police partners.
Of the 40 indicted, 34 suspects are in custody. Five are still on the run. Officials say the sixth suspect, Hasan Reed of Coraopolis, is now in custody.
And 35 of the suspects are from western Pennsylvania. Another is from Cleveland, two from Clarksburg, W. Va. and two from Southern California.
“The FBI was able to track the flow of illegal drugs from Southern California to Pittsburgh often by way of Cleveland, Ohio. The cocaine arrived on planes and buses, through the US Postal Service and by priority mail. The cash payments were sent cross country,” Hickton said.
Hickton said this amounted to many hours of good old fashioned street investigation, sophisticated surveillance, wire taps and controlled purchases.
When asked if this investigation was related to the recent violence in Homewood, Hickton was not specific but did say this:
“As we are looking at all of the violence in Homewood, and our goal with this investigation is to make Homewood a peaceful and safe community.”
Hickton also pointed out that this investigation is far from over and if anyone knows the whereabouts of the six suspects still at large, give the FBI a call at 412-432-4000. Callers can remain anonymous.
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