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Operation Smoke Screen Nails NJ Drug Network

Ten people, including two public workers, have been arrested in connection with a large drug distribution network.

Flickr User Mahidoodi

Officials seized 36 weapons during the arrests and searches, along with thousands of dollars in cash, drug paraphernalia and a pickup truck. Officials recovered approximately $130,000 worth of drugs in the process as well.

The 10-month investigation, known as Operation Smoke Screen, focused on the men who are believed to have utilized sophisticated means to distribute cocaine and marijuana in central New Jersey for up to two decades.

One of the men arrested is 55-year-old Michael Mahony of Milltown, the Chief Housing Inspector of the New Brunswick Housing Authority. Another, 57-year-old Anthony Michael Vitanza of New Brunswick, is employed by the town’s Department of Public Works.

“These alleged drug dealers posed a serious threat to the communities where they operated, as evidenced by the numerous illegal guns and drugs that we seized,” said acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman in a press release. “Through long-term investigations of this type, we are putting drug and gun traffickers where they belong – behind bars for a long time – and we are making the people of New Jersey safer.”


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