34 indicted for expansive drug trafficking operation

MARTINSBURG, WEST VIRGINIA – Arrests were made this morning after 34 people were indicted on July 20 for a drug trafficking conspiracy that spans several states, Acting United States Attorney Randolph J. Bernard announced.

The 30-count indictment charges 34 people from West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and the Dominican Republic for allegedly conducting a drug trafficking operation that included large amounts of heroin, fentanyl, cocaine base, and cocaine hydrochloride from Hagerstown, Maryland to locations in Berkeley County, West Virginia from August 2020 to June 2021. The drugs seized during the investigation amounted to 8.6 kilograms of cocaine, 1.02 kilograms of heroin, and 12 ounces of cocaine base “crack,” with a street value of approximately $471,000. Those charged are:

 

“This case is, once again, a prime example of the excellent work being performed by the Assistant United States Attorneys in the Northern District of West Virginia, members of the task force and our state and local law enforcement partners.  The drug enterprise run by the defendants involved a sophisticated operation including the use of a purported business to act as a front for drug trafficking and the laundering of hundreds of thousands of dollars in drug proceeds.  The fact that a good portion of the investigation occurred during the pandemic makes the results even more impressive. The message for those engaged in the trafficking of drugs, especially heroin and fentanyl, within the Northern District of West Virginia remains the same; you will be caught and the United States will seek lengthy prison terms to protect the citizens of West Virginia from the danger you present,” said Bernard.

It is alleged that Luna Mota, the owner of Top 3 Sources, a business in Hagerstown, Maryland, was using his business on West Washington Street for the purpose of having and selling controlled substances.

The indictment also lists items requested for forfeiture that include more than $400,000 in cash, a .22 caliber pistol, ammunition, and six vehicles, all believed to be proceeds from the drug trafficking conspiracy.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lara Omps-Botteicher is prosecuting the case on behalf of the government. The FBI; U.S. Marshals Service, Homeland Security Investigations; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives; The Drug Enforcement Administration; the West Virginia Air National Guard, the Eastern Panhandle Drug Task Force, a HIDTA-funded initiative (agencies included are the West Virginia State Police, Berkeley County Sheriff’s Department, Jefferson County Sherriff’s Department, Ranson Police Department, Charles Town Police Department, and Martinsburg City Police Department); West Virginia State Police; Customs and Border Protection; the Hagerstown Police Department; the National Resources Police Department; FBI-New York Safe Streets Task Force; the New York Police Department; the New Jersey State Police; the Washington County (Maryland) Drug Task Force; the Maryland State Police; the  U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland;  and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania investigated.

An indictment is merely an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

 

WV Public Corruption Hotline

West Virginia Public Corruption Hotline

 

Call 1-855-WVA-FEDS or Email wvafeds@usdoj.gov if you have information about public corruption in your community.

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