DEA makes arrests in massive heroin bust
The Drug Enforcement Administration says that the Bronx was home to the largest heroin seizure in New York state history.
Authorities recovered about 150 pounds of heroin and $24 million in cash Sunday inside a car in the parking lot of 210 West 251st St. in Fieldston, located across the street from Van Courtlandt Park. The street value of the heroin is nearly $50 million.
Prosecutors say another $2 million in cash and a firearm were recovered from two apartments.
The DEA and special narcotics prosecutor say the heroin was coming from Culiacan, Mexico - an area controlled by the Sinaloa Cartel.
Authorities arrested 46-year-old Jose Mercedes, the suspected head of the multimillion-dollar heroin organization, and 19-year-old Yenci Cruz Francisco. Both men are being charged with operating as a major trafficker and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the first degree. If convicted, they could face 25 years to life in prison.
In November, authorities also arrested two others suspected in the ring, including Mercedes' son, Jose Mercedes Jr.