2 accused of plotting distribution of heroin

Federal agents arrest man believed to be ringleader

February 18, 2005|By Ryan Davis | Ryan Davis,SUN STAFF

Two men arrested by federal agents after their fleeing vehicle crashed into a car at a Baltimore intersection Wednesday were charged yesterday with conspiring to distribute heroin.

Court documents allege that one of the suspects is the leader of a city drug ring and the other is his supplier from New York.

After the crash, agents of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration said, they confiscated six kilograms of heroin and duffel bags containing $400,000.

DEA agents wrote in paperwork filed yesterday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore that they have been targeting for several months members of a drug distribution organization allegedly run by Payton Green.

Green, 30, of the 100 block of W. Centre St., and James Larbi, 29, a Ghanaian national who lives in Bronx, N.Y., were arrested after the car crashed at 28th and Sisson streets in Remington. Both appeared in federal court yesterday and were told they face life in prison if convicted.

The court papers say that agents were monitoring Green on Wednesday and watched him as he left a hotel with a woman, dropped her off, entered a Gwynn Oak home, left carrying two large plastic shopping bags, went to his apartment, picked up the same woman, drove her to her Owings Mills house and returned to his apartment to pick up a suitcase.

About 1:40 p.m., the court papers say, Green left his apartment and picked up Larbi at the Greyhound bus station on Haines Street. Larbi was carrying a backpack.

In the court papers, the agents said that they tried to stop Larbi and Green on the Jones Falls Expressway near Penn Station, but a chase ensued. Driving east on 28th Street, the men's car crashed into a Mitsubishi Diamante stopped at a red light at Sisson Street. Several other vehicles were damaged. Green fled, but he and Larbi were quickly apprehended, according to officials and witnesses.

Authorities recovered six kilograms of heroin from the backpack Larbi was carrying and $400,000 from the suitcase Green had been carrying, the court papers say.

Agents searching the Owings Mills home recovered $200,000, according to the court papers. In a search of Green's apartment, authorities recovered another 800 grams of heroin, a money counter, an undisclosed sum of cash and a digital scale.

Another Baltimore man, Carlos Scovens, 38, also has been charged in the investigation, federal authorities said.

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