STATE — A pair of area men were arrested in Suffolk County, New York, for transporting 17 pounds of uncut, nearly ninety percent pure heroin.
Abraham Lopez-Perez, 23, of Elizabeth and Odir Mora, 30, of the Fords section of Woodbridge, pleaded not guilty to a charge of first degree criminal possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell.
The heroin, weighing 17 pounds — or 7 kilograms — wrapped in black plastic and shaped into foot insoles, was seized by detectives on July 25 in a hotel parking lot.
District Attorney Thomas Spota said Lopez-Perez and Mora, who are being held in lieu of $300,000 cash bail, have been indicted by a Suffolk grand jury.
Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Agent Joe Evans said, “What you see here epitomizes how heroin is smuggled into the U.S. from the production zone.”
The two defendants collected the insoles from illegal immigrants who had them in their shoes as they walked across the U.S.-Mexico border, investigators said.
The 90-percent pure heroin was enough for 500,000 doses and has a street value of $8 to $10 million, according to Spota.
Authorities believe the heroin would have been cut twice before it would be distributed to street-level dealers, had the suspects not been apprehended.
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