A heroin mill run out of a Paterson residence was dismantled, two men were arrested, and 44 pounds of heroin was confiscated by federal agents.
Luis Cepeda-Capellan, 25, of Paterson; and Isidro Fernandez, 32, of New York, were arrested in the operation. Both men were charged with conspiracy to distribute heroin.
Fernandez bought large quantities of glassine bags, strainers, sifters, and scales triggering an investigation from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
Last Thursday, Fernandez was observed receiving boxes of items typically used to transport drug paraphernalia like large quantities of glassine bags in New York. He then traveled to an undisclosed location in Paterson.
Fernandez met with a person identified as “Individual 1,” who operated a Toyota Sienna that is known to be used by Cepeda-Capellan. He gave the boxes to the individual and both departed from the location.
Law enforcement agents followed the individual to Cepeda-Capellan’s residence.
The next day, law enforcement agents observed Cepeda-Capellan exit the residence via the driveway. He was carrying a brown paper bag. He looked around the residence for presence of law enforcement and then walked several blocks. He then entered a waiting vehicle with the bag. Authorities conducted a motor vehicle stop. The bag was open and contained green transparent plastic wrapped bricks of heroin. The bag contained almost 9 pounds of heroin.
Law enforcement continued surveillance of the residence. “Numerous individuals” were observed fleeing the residence just after Cepeda-Capellan was placed under arrest. One of those fleeing was Fernandez.
Fernandez was stopped in the driveway.
Authorities raided the undisclosed residence in Paterson and found it was being used to package heroin. Approximately 35 pounds of heroin, numerous stamps, thousands of glassine bags, strainers, sifters, scales, and other drug paraphernalia were seized.
Cepeda-Capellan and Fernandez face a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison and a maximum of life in prison if convicted.