Twelve Arrested in Allegheny County Drug Bust, 20 Charged

MONROEVILLE – Twelve out of 20 individuals, accused of trafficking $8.7 million worth of cocaine and marijuana in and around Western Pennsylvania, were arrested Monday by agents from the Attorney General’s Bureau of Narcotics Investigation and local police.

Attorney General Tom Corbett said the investigation, known as “Operation Area Code,” began in January 2007 and focused on the alleged drug trafficking organization of Victor Allen Jr., 4 of Monroeville.

Evidence and testimony regarding the case was placed in front of a statewide investigating grand jury, which recommended the criminal charges being filed today.

“We allege that Allen established exclusive suppliers, who brought drugs into Pennsylvania from Ohio and fueled their individual drug organizations in the process,” Corbett said. “Through these connections, Allen is responsible for filtering millions of dollars worth of cocaine and marijuana on to the streets of Allegheny County.”

According to the grand jury, a group of Hispanic males based out of the Columbus, Ohio area were identified as Allen’s cocaine and marijuana sources. These individuals, who were referred to by Allen as the “Mexicans,” were exclusive suppliers of cocaine and marijuana from the summer of 2005 through September 2007.

The charges state that the “Mexicans” ran two separate trafficking organizations that supplied Allen’s drug network. Luis Miguel Guzman-Tirado was identified by the grand jury as having sole control of one of the operations with the assistance of three Hispanic men identified as Antonio Orduna, Jose Marcos Lopez, Cecilio Delgado-Amaral and other “runners.” The parallel organization was headed by Juventino Parra-Ramirez with the assistance of an unknown Hispanic male known as “Chilly”.

The grand jury found that Guzman-Tirado personally delivered cocaine and used couriers to deliver cocaine to Allen. Many of the runners, who were associated with the Guzman-Tirado operation, also had close business relationships with Allen.

Corbett said that Allen allegedly purchased kilogram quantities of cocaine for prices ranging from $25,000 to $30,000 per kilogram. Allen then re-packaged the cocaine in smaller quantities and sold the drug throughout Allegheny County to local members of Allen’s distribution organization.

From the summer of 2005 through September 2007, Allen allegedly obtained approximately 102 kilograms of cocaine with an estimated street value of more than $7.6 million and 430 pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of $1.1 million from at least seven Hispanic male individuals delivering for one of the two Columbus organizations.

Corbett noted that the Hispanic men involved in the drug organization are illegal immigrants.

The grand jury found that Allen conducted the majority of his drug business on a cell phone, which was subscribed to a fictitious name and address.

As the investigation progressed, investigators developed sufficient probable cause against Allen and placed a court authorized wiretap on the cellular phone that he used to conduct his drug trafficking business.

Corbett said that Allen and his local co-conspirators discussed cocaine deliveries in various quantities and referred to cocaine in various ways, including using the “412″ Pittsburgh and Allegheny County telephone area code, whichreferred to 4 ½ ounces of cocaine.

The grand jury found that Allen also relied heavily on the use of family members to assist in delivering, storing and packaging cocaine and marijuana. Specifically, Allen allegedly used the home of his daughter, at 1110 Penn St., Sharpsburg, Allegheny County, to accept deliveries of cocaine from his Columbus sources and relied on son, Charles Gaston to assist in the day-to-day operations of his drug organization.

Agents said that transactions for extremely large sums of cash frequently occurred at the Penn Street residence. On one occasion, agents intercepted a vehicle driven by Juventino Parra-Ramirez with $20,980 in cash in a concealed compartment after leaving the residence.

Approximately one week later, agents intercepted another vehicle occupied by Juventino Parra-Ramirez after leaving the residence, which contained $92,920 concealed in the wheel-well.

Corbett said that throughout the course of the investigation, agents seized 13 kilos of cocaine with an estimated street value of $975,000, two pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of $4,800, 10 vehicles and $113,900 in cash. Two handguns were also seized from Allen’s residence.

Corbett noted that this is a continuing investigation.

Corbett thanked the Pennsylvania State Police, Monroeville Police Department, Swissvale Police Department, Plum Police Department, Penn Hills Police Department, Moon Township Police Department, McDonald Police Department, North Fayette Township Police Department, Pittsburgh Police Department, Shaler Police Department, Lower Burrell Police Department, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Federal Bureau of Investigations, the Internal Revenue Service and the Drug Enforcement Administration for their assistance with this investigation.

The case will be prosecuted in Allegheny County by Deputy Attorney General Maureen Sheehan-Balchon of the Attorney General’s Drug Strike Force.

The defendants will be arraigned before Monroeville Magisterial District Judge Jeffrey Herbst. Preliminary hearings for the defendants are scheduled for Dec. 13, 2007 in front of Judge Herbst.

A complete list of the defendants and the charges against them are below.

– Victor Allen Jr., 41, Monroeville, is charged with three counts of possession with the intent to deliver and/or delivery of cocaine and marijuana, two counts of corrupt organizations, one count conspiracy, and one count aggravated assault.

– Luis Miguel Guzman-Tirado, a.k.a. Baltazar Millan Beltran, 45, Columbus, Ohio, is charged with two counts corrupt organizations, two counts of possession with the intent to deliver cocaine, two counts of unlawful delivery of cocaine and one count conspiracy to possess with the intent to deliver cocaine

– Jose Marcos Lopez, 31, Galloway, Ohio, is charged with two counts of corrupt organizations, two counts conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine, two counts of violations of the uniform firearms act, one count possession with intent to deliver cocaine and one count unlawful delivery of cocaine.

– Juventino Parra-Ramirez, a.k.a. Cesar DeLeon Gutierrez, 34, currently incarcerated in the Allegheny County Prison, is charged with two counts corrupt organizations, two counts possession with intent to deliver cocaine, two counts unlawful delivery of cocaine, one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine, one count possession with intent to deliver marijuana and one count unlawful delivery of marijuana.

– “Chilly”, John Doe, Hispanic male, is charged with two counts corrupt organizations, conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine, one count possession with intent to deliver cocaine, one count delivery of cocaine, one count possession with intent to deliver marijuana and one count delivery of marijuana.

– Antonio “Smooth” Orduna, 25, currently incarcerated in the Federal Correctional Facility, Eden, TX, is charged with two counts corrupt organizations, one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine, one count possession with intent to deliver cocaine and one count unlawful delivery of cocaine.

– Cecilio Delgado-Amaral, 21, Hillard, Ohio, is charged with one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Charles Gaston, 22, Pittsburgh, is charged with four counts possession with intent to deliver cocaine, three counts unlawful delivery of cocaine, two counts corrupt organizations, one count conspiracy to possess with the intent to deliver cocaine, and one count possession with intent to deliver marijuana.

– Johnny Mitchell, 62, Pittsburgh, is charged with two counts corrupt organizations, one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine, one count possession with intent to deliver cocaine, one count unlawful delivery cocaine and one count hindering apprehension.

– Darnell Smith, 24, Pittsburgh, is charged with five counts possession with intent to deliver cocaine, two counts corrupt organizations and one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Anthony Haley, 42, Pittsburgh, is charged with three counts possession with intent to deliver cocaine, two counts corrupt organizations and one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Lloyd Benjamin, 37, Pittsburgh, is charged with four counts possession with intent to deliver cocaine, two counts corrupt organizations and one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Djarrard Dutrieville, 29, Pittsburgh, is charged with one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine and one count possession with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Dorian Hughes, 32, Pittsburgh, is charged with two counts corrupt organizations, possession with intent to deliver cocaine, one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine and one count unlawful delivery of cocaine.

– Raymont McMiller, 32, Verona, is charged with two counts corrupt organizations, two counts possession with intent to deliver cocaine, and one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Steffon Salter, 42, Pittsburgh, is charged with three counts possession with intent to deliver cocaine, two counts corrupt organizations and one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Scott Burks, 41, Monroeville,  is charged with four counts unlawful delivery of cocaine, three counts possession with the intent to deliver cocaine, two counts corrupt organizations and one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Frederick Mack, 37,Penn Hills,  is charged with one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine, one count criminal attempt to possess with intent to deliver cocaine and one count possession with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Timothy Terry, 43 Pittsburgh, is charged with one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine, one count criminal attempt to possess with intent to deliver cocaine, and one count possession with intent to deliver cocaine.

– Duwayne Young, 54, Pittsburgh, is charged with two counts possession with the intent to deliver cocaine and one count conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver cocaine.

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