Two-day surveillance of a drug distribution home on Gould Avenue resulted in the arrest of four men, according the Passaic County Sheriff’s Office.
Detectives arrested three suspects from Sussex and Bergen counties purchasing prescription pills and marijuana from a city man. Detectives also arrested the Paterson man who was selling drugs from his Gould Avenue home.
Justin Dondero, 36, of Franklin; Matthew Vanderweert, 28, of Wantage; Richard Giuliana, 35, of Moonachie; and Nahid Thabata, 37, of Paterson, were arrested during a surveillance operation of 10 Gould Avenue between September 23 and 24, sheriff Richard Berdnik said.
Detectives were informed by a concerned citizen that the home was a drug den. “The caller stated that at least 20 cars a night double park near the location in order to purchase narcotics from the location,” Berdnik said. “The caller also stated the person is selling mostly pain killers.”
Sheriff’s officer setup surveillance of the home after getting the tip. Officers on two occasion observed Thabata engage in a small talk with buyers before exchanging drugs for money. Detectives saw Dondero exit a double parked black Chevy and approach Thabata at which point a drug transaction was completed.
“Detectives stopped the vehicle a few blocks away and recovered (10) 30 mgs of oxycodone from the interior of the vehicle,” sheriff said. Dondero was arrested along with the car’s driver Vanderweert.
Detectives continued their watch of the home. A red Toyota pulled up on the block, again double parking, before its driver Giuliana approached Thabata to purchase drugs. “After a hand to hand drug transaction, Giuliana returned to his vehicle and departed the area,” sheriff said. “A motor vehicle stop was conducted at which time (4) suboxone, (2) zanax pills and a bag of marijuana was recovered from the vehicle.”
The three buyers were charged with various drug offenses, the sheriff said. The alleged dealer Thabata was charged with 13 narcotics related offenses with the highest charge of 2nd degree possession of narcotic prescription pills with the intent to distribute.
Detectives recovered 79 suboxone, 18 xanax, three ambien sleeping pills, four grams of cocaine, and $1,996 in drug money, according to the sheriff.
Thabata was transferred to Paterson Police Department lockup.
“Both the narcotics Bureau and the Communications Division should be commended for their efforts,” Berdnik said. “The Sheriff’s Office takes all information received about alleged criminal activity seriously.”