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3 charged in Mexican cartel-linked heroin trafficking operation in Rowan County, North Carolina

February 5, 2017  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
3 charged in Mexican cartel-linked heroin trafficking operation in Rowan County, North Carolina

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Three residents of Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, are facing decades behind bars for their roles in a large-scale heroin trafficking enterprise in Rowan County linked to a Mexican drug cartel.

The arrests of 39-year-old Gerardo Juarez, 26-year-old Sergeyevna Borovskaya, and 27-year-old Hugo Fernando Navarrete-Lopez come as a result of a three-year joint federal, state and local probe, WSOC-TV reported.

“I think it’s a large scale case for an area like Rowan County and the Metro Charlotte area,” Rowan County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy David Ramsey said. “It’s a significant seizure and arrested three significant traffickers.”

In December and January, undercover officers purchased substantial amounts of heroin from two individuals working for the Mexican National Drug Trafficking Organization. Many of the deals occurred in shopping centers and parking lots, and the suspects used false registration plates and alias identities.

“Information was gleaned from cooperating witnesses that a Mexican heroin trafficking ring based in Charlotte-Matthews had been supplying heroin to Rowan County for more than ten years, with some transactions involving quantities of up to $10,000 at a time,” deputies revealed.

(Gerardo Juarez, Darya Borovkay)

On Tuesday, Juarez was taken into custody and had 52 grams of heroin on him. A search warrant was issued at the man’s residence, where investigators say they discovered 478 grams of heroin, three firearms, multiple cell phones, cash, drug paraphernalia and other items related to trafficking.

Borovskaya and Navarrete-Lopez were also arrested for their involvement in the drug trafficking organization.

Authorities are working to ascertain the real identities of Juarez and Navarrete-Lopez. Juarez reportedly came to the U.S. in 2005 under an alternate name.

Borovskaya was charged with six counts of heroin trafficking and one count of conspiracy to traffic heroin. She was convicted of felony cocaine possession on January 18th.

Navarrete-Lopez was charged with trafficking heroin. Juarez was charged with four counts of heroin trafficking and one count of conspiracy to traffic heroin. All three suspects were given a $1 million bond and are facing over 23 years behind bars and $500,000 penalties.

Additional arrests are expected to occur.

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