Grand jury indicts 15 on drug charges

ring in city said to take in $20,000 a day

`The people who make the money' are targets

February 28, 2003|By Del Quentin Wilber | Del Quentin Wilber,SUN STAFF

City prosecutors and police announced yesterday the breakup of a West Baltimore drug organization that they say made nearly $20,000 a day selling heroin, cocaine and marijuana.

Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin P. Clark and State's Attorney Patricia C. Jessamy said a city grand jury indicted 15 people on charges of drug distribution Tuesday. Most of those, including the man accused of being the ringleader, were arrested Wednesday morning, police officials said.

"We're going to be targeting the people who make the money," Clark said in announcing the indictments in "Operation Money Train," which took its name from the type of heroin the group is accused of selling.

Police said Wiley "Corey" Williams, 37, of the 900 block of Ashbridge Road in Essex is accused of leading the organization and was being held without bail.

Maj. Fred Bealefeld, commander of the department's drug unit, said his detectives began investigating the organization in November after receiving information from a confidential informant.

Undercover detectives made 17 purchases and followed Williams to Newport News, Va., where he is accused of laundering his profits, Bealefeld said.

Police seized $40,000, three handguns, a rifle, 5 ounces of heroin, 5 ounces of cocaine and a half-pound of marijuana from a number of locations.

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