Multiple Arrests in Huge Drug Bust in Philly Suburbs
The Montgomery County DA’s office announced a huge drug bust involving 11 individuals, including 2 minors. The alleged drug dealing scheme involved several high schools and colleges in the Philadelphia suburbs, and involved marijuana, cocaine, ecstasy and hash oil. Several of the schools are located in affluent areas including Lower Merion. Those arrested include current and former students of some of the best high schools in the Philadelphia area; some were former star lacrosse players.
The bust comes after several months of police investigation and confidential informants who made controlled buys. Police officers then obtained warrants and searched multiple locations throughout the Philadelphia suburbs, including an apartment, where guns, drugs, and a large amount of cash were found. The investigation is ongoing. Source: www.philly.com, Pot pinch: 9 adults charged in self-styled ‘Main Line takeover project’
The individuals have been charged with multiple counts of manufacturing and delivering controlled substances, conspiracy, etc. At the preliminary hearing, which is scheduled for May, the magistrate judge may dismiss any charges the Commonwealth is unable to substantiate.
Criminal Drug Charges in This Drug Bust
The purported ring leader of this drug dealing scheme has been charged with 22 counts, including:
- 13 counts of Possession with Intent to Manufacture/Deliver (PWID)
- 1 count of Dealing in Proceeds of Unlawful Activities
- 1 count of Corrupt Organizations
He was also charged with various counts of conspiracy and associated misdemeanors: 3 counts of Possession of a Controlled Substance by Person Not Registered; 1 count of Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.
PWID is a felony, and the possible sentence will depend on various factors, many of which will probably mean mandatory minimum sentences. For example, guns found within close proximity of drugs triggers a special sentencing law, 42 Pa.C.S. Section 9712.1, Sentences for certain drug offenses committed with firearms. PWID with a firearm carries a mandatory 5-10 years in prison. In addition, both Dealing in Proceeds of Unlawful Activities and Corrupt Organizations are first degree felonies which carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison/jail and a maximum fine of $25,000.
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