Major drug busts in Mayfair and Castor Gardens

U.S. Attorney William McSwain

U.S. Attorney William McSwain announced the arrest of six people in an alleged drug-trafficking case based in houses on the 1000 block of St. Vincent St. in Castor Gardens and the 2900 block of Teesdale St. in Mayfair.

Those arrested were Juan Caceres, 30; Jose M. Suarez-Mendosa, 29; Jerson David Diaz, 31; Ezequiel Regalado-Rosario, 45; Ramcel Duarte-Rodriguez, 21; and Juan Francisco Regalado-Ferreras, 27.

Caceres lives in Elkins Park. The others are Philadelphia residents.

They were arrested and charged with possession with intent to distribute various amounts of heroin as associates of the Caceres drug-trafficking organization.

Caceres, Regalado-Rosario, Duarte-Rodriguez and Regalado-Ferreras were arrested at the St. Vincent Street home and charged with possession with intent to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin. Suarez-Mendosa and Diaz were arrested at the Teesdale Street home and charged with possession with intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin.

All six defendants were detained by federal court until trial. McSwain described Caceres as the “ringleader.”

A seventh defendant, Braulizabeth Reyes-Villanueva, 31, of Philadelphia, was charged elsewhere with conspiracy to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin.

During the execution of the search warrants, agents allegedly discovered a large-scale heroin packaging operation at the residence on St. Vincent Street, including tens of thousands of packets of heroin, grinders, scales and other paraphernalia, as well as a loaded Glock 42 firearm with an additional box of 50 rounds. Agents also found two children, about 2 months old and 4 years old, apparently living in what they described as a drug-infested residence.

During the investigation, agents allegedly observed Reyes-Villanueva and Caceres supplying Tennille Lee with packages of drugs on multiple occasions in an alleyway behind the Teesdale Street residence.

If convicted, Suarez-Mendosa and Diaz face a maximum possible sentence of 40 years in prison. Caceres, Regalado-Rosario, Duarte-Rodriguez and Regaldo-Ferreras as well as Reyes-Villanueva face a maximum possible sentence of lifetime imprisonment.

The case was investigated by the FBI Philadelphia Division, the Philadelphia Police Department, the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office, the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office Detectives – Violent Crime Unit and the Cheltenham Police Department, with assistance from the FBI Newark Division – Atlantic City Resident Agency, the Drug Enforcement Administration Atlantic City office and the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office, and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Labrum. ••