7 arrested in Bushwick drug bust
Seven men were arrested in a Bushwick drug bust Wednesday — including one man who allegedly sold heroin near a public elementary school, federal prosecutors announced Thursday.
The other six men were selling heroin laced with fentanyl and crack cocaine inside the Bushwick Houses, a public housing development, prosecutors say.
“The subjects arrested in this case are allegedly pushing the drugs that are killing hundreds of people daily in this country,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in Charge William Sweeney. “They also exposed children going to and from school to a scary and violent world of criminal activity that would be difficult for an impressionable child to forget.”
The defendants — Jessie Smith, Adrian Mattei, Kendall Johnson, Tyrell Spellman, Saquan Warlick, Ruben Pabon and Byron Elder — were selling the drugs around the Bushwick Houses between July 2018 and June 2019, the prosecutors charge. If convicted, they face sentences ranging from 40 years to life in prison.
They were arraigned before United States Magistrate Judge Lois Bloom.
Mattei allegedly sold heroin within 1,000 feet of P.S. 257 in August 2018.
Between November 2018 and June 2019, Pabon and Elder sold 28 grams of crack cocaine at the Bushwick Houses, both in buildings and outside, authorities said.
“Crack cocaine, heroin and fentanyl have a well-known history of destroying lives and devastating communities,” said NYPD Commissioner James P. O’Neill, adding that the work of investigators would keep kids and those living in public housing safe.
Fentanyl is involved in about half of all overdose deaths in New York City — and overdose deaths have been increasing for seven straight years citywide, according to 2018 data.
Drugs are not the only problem at the Bushwick Houses. The troubled development had the most murders of any NYCHA development in 2018, including an unsolved double murder, the Brooklyn Eagle learned in May. Another woman was axed to death at the Bushwick Houses in April.
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