Updated 12/05/2012 04:41 PM
Authorities bust cocaine pipeline
More than one million dollars in cocaine was seized and dozens of people are under arrest after authorities bust a statewide drug pipeline. Officials with the Attorney General's office say the cocaine was transported from the New York City and Buffalo areas to Cortland, Syracuse and Watertown. They say the arrests were the result of a nine month investigation. Sarah Blazonis has more.
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NEW YORK STATE -- Three different million dollar drug rings were the focus of the investigation known as "Operation Southbound." After Wednesday's raids, more than ten kilograms of cocaine had been seized and 39 people were in custody.
"These are people moving very significant quantities of dangerous drugs into our communities," said New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.
Investigators say in the first ring, John Galan of Syracuse allegedly worked with middlemen to obtain drugs from the New York City and Buffalo areas. Those middlemen were linked to Rayshonn Hester, who sold large amounts of cocaine to buyers in Cortland.
They say the second network involved Corey Grier and Termaine Kirby, also acting as large Cortland County distributors. They were supplied by Kamar Davidson of Brooklyn. Davidson also directed Grier to sell cocaine in the Fort Drum area on at least one occasion.
That same pipeline supplied the third operation's leader, Andre Walker of Cortland.
Dozens more were also charged in three indictments in Cortland County Court.
"This is exactly the kind of criminal enterprise that our Organized Crime Task Force was designed to take down," said Schneiderman.
Charges include criminal sale and criminal possession of a controlled substance and conspiracy to commit those crimes. Another charge listed stems from a relatively new law that carries a much harsher penalty.
"It includes charges under the major traffickers statute, which is the only statute in New York that can carry a life sentence for drug dealing," said Schneiderman.
Attorney General Schneiderman and the State Police Superintendent applauded the work of the many agencies that took part in the investigation. They include the Cortland County Sheriff's Department, State Police and Onondaga County Sheriff's Department.
DONALD ABRAMS - Syracuse NY
RAVAUGHN BAKER - Syracuse NY
LYLE CAMIGE - Felts Mills NY
TERRANCE CARTER - Syracuse NY
JOSEPH CROSSON - Cortland NY
KAMAR DAVIDSON - Brooklyn NY
ALEXANDER GALAN - Syracuse NY
JOHN GALAN - Syracuse NY
DANIELLE GARROW - Cortland NY
TAMARA GLOVER - Cortland NY
GERALDO GONZALEZ - Syracuse NY
SHANE GRANGER - Cortland NY
COREY D. GRIER - New York City
CORNELIUS HATHAWAY - Cortland NY
RAYSHONN HESTER - Currently in State Prison
DARREN HIGHTOWER - Syracuse NY
GAGE A HILL - Cortland NY
CHARLOTTE HOWARD - Cortland NY
TONY KING - Syracuse NY
TERMAINE KIRBY - Cortland NY
GEORGE MACON - Cortland NY
RICARDO MARTINO-SERRANO - Syracuse NY
OSCAR MORALES - Buffalo NY
DEBORAH OLIVA - Cortland NY
SANTOS OLIVER - Pitcher NY
CARLOS ORTA - Solvay NY
JIMMY PENA - Bronx NY
BILLY PRINGLE - Syracuse NY
TOSHIRO SCOTT - Syracuse NY
LISA SPECTOR - Cortland NY
GERRY LEE STEWART - Cortland NY
LISSETTE TEJEDA - Solvay NY
ANDRE WALKER - Cortland NY
RUSH WALTS - Evans Mills NY
KASSANDRA WHITNEY - Mexico NY
NADINE WILLIAMS - Syracuse NY
RAYMOND WILLIAMS - Syracuse NY
TERRANCE WILLIAMS - Syracuse NY
JESSICA WOODARD - Cortland NY