Thursday, November 3, 2011

Major Massachusetts Drug Case: Weeklong sting nets drugs, cash, arrests

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November 01, 2011

FAIRHAVEN — Police in Fairhaven charged six people and seized more than 100 Percocet tablets and $17,000 in cash in a weeklong surveillance and sting operation that ended Thursday.

Working with the Bristol County Sheriff's Office South Coast Anti-Crime Task Force, Fairhaven police arrested Christopher Serra, 26, of 139 Spring St., on Oct. 27, after they said they observed him in multiple hand-to-hand drug transactions. Also arrested was New Bedford resident Christopher Bretton, 20, after he completed a drug transaction with Serra in a local parking lot, according to police.

With access to Serra's phone, police conducted a sting operation responding to texts from customers to set up seemingly authentic drug deals. Four additional people, including at least two Fairhaven residents, were charged from the sting. police said. The four face narcotics violations in Third District Court.

Serra and Bretton's arrests came after a weeklong surveillance during which Serra was seen making numerous hand-to-hand drug transactions within close proximity to his apartment, according to police.

Serra was charged with distribution of a Class B controlled substance, conspiracy to violate drug laws and school zone violations for distributing within 1,000 feet of Hastings Middle School. Bretton was charged with possession of a Class B substance and conspiracy to violate drug laws.

In a search of Serra's apartment, police said they recovered a safe filled with a large amount of cash. In total, more than $17,000 in cash and 100 Percocet tablets were seized.

Fairhaven police worked with the Bristol County Sheriff's Office South Coast Anti-Crime Task Force and Mattapoisett and Dartmouth departments in the operation. Working through the task force gives the department greater flexibility and offers officers broader jurisdiction, said Fairhaven Sergeant Kevin Kobza.

"We have jurisdiction throughout Bristol County once we become sworn deputies with the task force," said Kobza. "It's been very productive for us. It has led to being able to do more than we would have been able to do."


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