Anthony M. Destefano Newsday
NEWARK, NJ — Federal and state officials announced Monday the seizure of 3,200 pounds of cocaine — about 1.5 tons — from a shipping container in the Port of Newark, the largest haul by law enforcement at that facility in about 25 years.
The cocaine was discovered on Feb. 28 during a container inspection in Newark and had a street value of an estimated $77 million, officials said. The drugs were wrapped in over 60 packages that were readily discovered when the container was opened.
Units of the federal Drug Enforcement Administration, Homeland Security Investigations, the NYPD and New York Sate Police played roles in the joint investigation.
“Cocaine, New York’s nemesis of the 90’s, is back, indicating traffickers push to build an emerging customer base of users mixing cocaine with fentanyl,” said Ray Donovan, New York DEA special agent in charge, in a statement.
In recent years cocaine traffickers have been lacing their product with fentanyl, a synthetic opioid, which massively boost the potency of the drug but can very easily lead to an overdose and has been linked to numerous deaths in the area.