FALL RIVER, MASS. (WHDH) - A monthslong investigation into a massive fentanyl trafficking organization in Greater Fall River ended last week with the seizure of 850 grams of fentanyl and 16 arrests, authorities announced Monday.
The wiretap investigation — dubbed “Operation Mouse Trap” — concluded Friday when law enforcement officials from Massachusetts and Rhode Island executed 11 search warrants, arrested 16 individuals, and seized large quantities of fentanyl and cocaine, according to the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office.
Eight of the 11 search warrants were executed in Fall River, two in Providence, and one in Smithfield. Law enforcement seized about 850 grams of fentanyl, 56 grams of cocaine, about $19,000 in cash, an illegal firearm, and various steroids and prescription pills, the DA’s office said.
The initial target of the investigation was 41-year-old Fall River native Michael “Squeak” Rebello, and his enterprise labeled by investigators as the Michael Rebello Drug Trafficking Organization.
After an exhaustive investigation, investigators deemed it necessary to begin intercepting phone calls and text messages of members of the organization in an effort to “dismantle an organization responsible for trafficking high quantities of fentanyl throughout the Fall River area.”
A court-authorized wiretap allegedly led investigators to Rebello’s top drug runner, 33-year-old Fall River native Daniel Correira, and his two main alleged fentanyl suppliers, Adriny Bernard and Eladio Cabral, authorities said.
“The increase in the Sale of fentanyl during the last five years has led to a significant increase in the number of fatal overdoes. Through the end of November this year there have been 194 fatal overdoses in Bristol County this year,” Bristol District Attorney Thomas Quinn said in a statement. “These types of investigations are critical to continue to put the pressure on drug dealers for pedaling death on our streets.”
All of the suspects nabbed in the bust are facing charges of fentanyl trafficking or conspiracy to violate the drug laws.
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