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Drug trafficking investigation leads to three arrested, half kilo of cocaine seized

Posted September 22

— Three West Springfield residents are under arrest after a drug trafficking investigation.

James Leydon, spokesperson for the Hampden Co. District Attorney's office, said that 39-year-old Publio Berrios, 29-year-old Jesus Hernandez-Ortiz, and 32-year-old Tiana Matias, all of West Springfield were arrested on Tuesday by the Hampden County Narcotics Taskforce for their alleged involvement in cocaine trafficking.

An investigation by the task force reportedly found that the three suspects were allegedly receiving large quantities of cocaine from the Dominican Republic at a residence on Irving Street in West Springfield.

On Tuesday, search warrants were executed and during the search, investigators reportedly found 255 grams of cocaine, an unregistered firearm, ammunition, and $19,000 in cash was seized.

"An additional 316 grams of cocaine was seized earlier in the investigation which was addressed to the residence and one of the suspects," Leydon added.

In total, 571 grams of cocaine were seized.

"We are focused on investigating, arresting, and aggressively prosecuting drug dealers and traffickers. It is they who profit from addiction, which destroys lives, families, and communities," Hampden County District Attorney Anthony Gulluni said in a statement.

Berrios and Hernandez-Ortiz are both facing charges including trafficking cocaine over 200 grams and conspiracy to violate drug laws.

Matias is being charged with possession of a firearm without a license, possession of ammunition without an FID card, possession of a high capacity feeding device, and improper storage of a firearm.

Arraignments have been held for all three suspects. Bail was set at $5,000 for Berrios and $10,000 for Hernandez-Ortiz, despite prosecutors asking for $50,000 bail for each. Bail was set at $2,500 for Matias.

All three suspects are due back in court on October 17.

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