Authorities announced Tuesday the arrests of 21 people in Lowell, Massachusetts and other communities in connection with a large-scale drug and firearms trafficking operation.
The arrests were made at multiple locations early this morning as a result of a multi-agency investigation that spanned several years, Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan said at a news briefing.
There were 32 search warrants served Tuesday morning, in which police said they seized 11 weapons, hundreds of grams of cocaine, methamphetamine, fentanyl and Xanax and more than $100,000.
Since 2019, the Lowell Police Department, in collaboration with other agencies, has made multiple undercover purchases of narcotics and identified multiple individuals suspected of being involved in a large-scale drug supply chain ranging from bulk sellers to street dealers. .
Over the course of the investigation, police and prosecutors gathered evidence that Hector Arriaga, 33, of Lowell, allegedly led and operated a drug gang calling itself the “Cocaine Cowboys.”
The following individuals face multiple charges as a result of the investigation:
- Hector Arriaga32 Lowell – Fentanyl, Cocaine Trafficking, Possession of a Firearm, Firearms Trafficking, and more charges.
- Angel Castro PenalozaLowell 26 – Distribution of a Controlled Substance, Fentanyl trafficking among others.
- Zachary LaPorte27 Winter Haven, FL – Trafficking in cocaine.
- Raphael Mejias24 Lowell – Fentanyl trafficking, Cocaine trafficking, and more.
- Ruben Torres22 Lawrence – Cocaine Trafficking, and more.
- Anthony FloresTyngsboro 29 – Trafficking in fentanyl, possession of a firearm.
- John Miller29 Lowell – Trafficking in cocaine over 200 grams.
- Randall TremblayLowell 31: Dealing in cocaine, possession of a firearm and more.
- Jason PaisLowell 31 – Conspiracy to traffic cocaine, firearms trafficking, possession of a shotgun, and more.
- Wanda Quinones54 Kingston, NH – Cocaine and Fentanyl Trafficking, Possession with Intent to Distribute Schedule B Controlled Substances and more.
- Jesse Morales MartinezLowell 27 – Conspiracy to traffic more than 200 grams of cocaine, traffic more than 18 grams of cocaine.
- Benyalis MejiasLowell 22 – Conspiracy to traffic more than 200 grams of cocaine.
- Roberto Lopez32 Lowell – Distribution of a Class B Controlled Substance (cocaine), Trafficking in Fentanyl in excess of 10 grams, Conspiracy to Distribute a Class B Controlled Substance (cocaine).
- David Sandoval31 Lowell – Conspiracy to distribute a Schedule B controlled substance (cocaine), trafficking cocaine over 200 grams, trafficking fentanyl over 100 grams.
- Isaiah ColonLowell 20 – Conspiracy to distribute a Class B controlled substance (cocaine), possession of a firearm.
- Davis NgounLowell 22 – Conspiracy to Distribute a Class B Controlled Substance (Cocaine) and Trafficking in Cocaine Over 100 Grams, Distribution of a Class B Controlled Substance (Cocaine), Possession with Intent to Distribute a Class A Controlled Substance (fentanyl)
- John Troncoso19 Lowell – Conspiracy to Distribute a Class B Controlled Substance (cocaine).
- Junior FrettLowell 39 – Conspiracy to traffic cocaine in excess of 100 grams, possession of a firearm.
- Raynel Hillary, 35 of Methuen – Trafficking of cocaine of more than 200 grams. He has been arraigned today in the Lawrence District Court
- Betsy Martinez46 Lowell – Cocaine traffic in excess of 100 grams.
- Guelmin Manon35 Lawrence – Possession with intent to distribute a class B substance (cocaine), possession of ammunition.
Most of the arraignments are expected to take place on Wednesday in the Lowell District Court.