What to Know
- Philadelphia police say a four-day operation took about $670,000 worth of illegal drugs like heroin and cocaine.
- Police also seized almost $147,000 in cash and 21 guns during the sting focused in the drug-plagued Kensington and Fairhill neighborhoods.
- Around 200 people were arrested and charged.
Narcotics officers took illicit drugs like heroin and cocaine worth around $670,000, and illegal guns off the streets of Philadelphia in a four-day operation, authorities said Tuesday.
The sting took place between December 17 and 20 in the city's Kensington and Fairhill neighborhoods, which have long been plagued by drug dealing operations.
About 200 people were arrested and almost $147,000 in cash was confiscated by the Philadelphia narcotics task force — a group that includes city officers and agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration and FBI.
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“We focused on the dealers, not so much the buyers,” Philadelphia Police Narcotics Division Inspector Joseph Fredericksdorf said, while noting that buyers who were arrested would be guided toward treatment, rather than punishment.
Busts were carried out at about 40 houses and street corners, police said. The locations were chosen after weeks of surveillance to help police build their cases.
The drugs recovered included heroin, crystal meth, cocaine, crack cocaine, marijuana, synthetic marijuana, Suboxone and prescription painkillers. The drugs have a street value of $670,433, according to police.
On Tuesday morning, Philadelphia police displayed the items they seized, including various drugs and 21 guns, including some high-powered weaponry.
“As you can see these guys are armed, they have arsenals with them,” Fredericksdorf said.
Police planned to forensically see if the guns were involved in shootings. Fredricksdorf called it a “win” to take the guns off streets before they could be used.
Some of the charges the accused dealers will face include drug dealing and weapons charges.