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DEA Busts $22 Million Marijuana Ring in NY

The investigation was called Operation Green Giant and was a joint effort. Joon H. Kim, who is the acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney, said that the 10 suspects smuggled $22 million worth of weed.

Operation Green Giant

Federal agents say that the smuggling ring mailed more than 6000 pounds of marijuana to the Bronx, Manhattan and New Rochelle, NY from March of last year until this month. Most were sent via FedEx. The investigation was called Operation Green Giant and was a joint effort between several agencies including the Drug Enforcement Administration, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York, the NYPD, the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the U.S. Secret Service, Homeland Security and the U.S. Marshals Service, along with several others. Agents said that several of the suspect’s apartments were searched where they found pot, cocaine and cash. Agents also said that they found a sawed-off shotgun and three handguns in the raid. Along with the busts in New York, DEA agents confiscated more than $230,000 from one suspect the week before the arrests at the San Francisco International Airport.

The 10 people who were arrested on conspiracy charges were Hallil Tabar, 29, Jairo Cienfuegos, 27, William Baez, 31, Henry Rodriguez, 41, Danny Hannah, Jr., 48, Starly Hernandez, 30, Lorne Victoria, 37, Asmin Hernandez, 27, John Munoz-Garcia, 30, Kevin Umejei, 25. Nine of the men were arrested on Wednesday, and Starly Hernandez was arrested on Thursday. The men all face at least 5 years in prison with the maximum sentence being life in prison.

Niko Mann is a freelance writer living in Los Angeles.

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