Citywide raids net $291k in drugs, 23 guns and 93 arrests

drug bust
Credit: Rikard Larma / Metro

Philadelphia police conducted a sweeping series of drug raids on Thursday in the East Division of Philadelphia, which covers Kensington, Port Richmond, Juniata, Frankford and parts of North Philadelphia.

Officers served a total of 85 warrants, arrested 93 people and seized $291,781 worth of narcotics, $18,642 in cash and 23 firearms.

“It was an outstanding job by the Narcotics Field Unit, who put the initiative together,” Lt. John Stanford said.

“The East Division was selected because of the recent uptick in violence in that area, so they wanted to see what they could go after.”

The series of raids were carried out in the 24th, 25th and 26th Districts beginning around 6 a.m. and ending about 12 hours later.

Stanford said drugs confiscated included crack cocaine and various pills but were largely comprised of hydroponic marijuana and heroin.

Police seized a total of 14.5 pounds of hydroponic marijuana with an estimated street value of $161,126 and over 11 ounces of heroin valued at $105,867.

They also confiscated nearly eight ounces of crack cocaine valued at $22,500, four pounds of mid-grade marijuana worth $18,153, an undisclosed quantity of OxyContin with an estimated street value of $10,560, 24 1/2 grams of PCP, 5.4 grams of cocaine and a number of pills including Xanax and Percocet whose combined value is about $2,700.

Twenty-three guns, some of them assault weapons, and three vehicles were also taken off the street.

“They were focusing on narcotics, but guns and drugs go hand-in-hand, as you can see,” Stanford said. “It was a good initiative to combat some of the recent violence in that area.”

One of the men arrested during the busts was 31-year-old Nicholas Suozzo, who was taken into custody at his home on East Thompson Street near Lehigh Avenue in Port Richmond.

Police allegedly found narcotics, several assault weapons and pipe bombs inside the home while serving a warrant.

Suozzo was arraigned today and is charged with possession with the intent to distribute, unlawfully possessing weapons of mass destruction, causing a catastrophe and related weapons and narcotics offenses.

He is currently jailed in lieu of $3 million bail. Suozzo is next due in court on April 1 for a preliminary hearing.


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