What to Know
- 20 were charged for their roles in a drug-trafficking conspiracy that distributed cocaine and crack cocaine in Monmouth County, feds say
- 19 of the charged were arrested Thursday in coordinated takedown by federal and local agencies, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito said
- One individual still remains at large, Carpenito added
Twenty people have been charged for their roles in a drug-trafficking conspiracy that distributed cocaine and crack cocaine in Monmouth County, New Jersey, federal prosecutors said.
Nineteen of those charged were arrested Thursday in a coordinated takedown by federal, state, and local law enforcement, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced, adding that one individual still remains at large.
According to prosecutors, citing court documents, between April 2019 and August 2019, the accused and others engaged in a narcotics conspiracy that operated primarily in municipalities throughout Monmouth County – including Cliffwood, Keansburg, Matawan, Keyport, Red Bank, Long Branch, Neptune, and Asbury Park, as well as Brick Township in Ocean County – and which sought to profit from the distribution of cocaine and crack cocaine.
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Through the interception of telephone calls and texts and other investigative techniques, law enforcement officials learned Damion Helmes, 39, of Cliffwood, received regular supplies of cocaine from Derrick Hayes, 37, of Neptune, and Dequan Copeland, 40, of Red Bank.
Allegedly, Helmes then distributed that cocaine, portions of which he converted into crack cocaine, for profit, to other distributors, sub-dealers and end users throughout the county.
All 20 of the accused are charged with conspiracy to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine, or 280 grams or more of crack cocaine. Some of the accused are charged with both.
Helmes is facing life in prison if convicted, while Hayes and Copeland face a maximum of 40 years in prison.
Keith Logan, 38, of Long Branch, remains at large, according to prosecutors. He is charged with numerous narcotics offenses and faces life in prison if convicted.
Attorney information for the accused was not immediately known.