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What you need to know for 12/13/2017

Feds: 12 arrested in Schenectady-Albany drug ring

Feds: 12 arrested in Schenectady-Albany drug ring

Accused of operating ring from August 2016 to May
Feds: 12 arrested in Schenectady-Albany drug ring
Photographer: Shutterstock

ALBANY — A dozen people have been arrested in a federal drug trafficking ring based in Schenectady and Albany with ties to a May Schenectady drug raid, authorities said.

The U.S. Attorney's Office announced the 12 arrests Thursday. Eight of the 12 have Schenectady addresses, while two others are from Albany.

They are accused of operating the ring between August 2016 and May, selling cocaine and crack cocaine. Two of the 12 are also accused of dealing heroin, prosecutors said.

The other two are from Manhattan, one of whom is on parole for murder, records show.

The announcement follows the May arrest of Darren C. Robinson, 52, of both Schenectady and Teaneck, New Jersey, after a planned Thruway stop in Ulster County, according to court documents filed in his case then.

Agents with the FBI then raided a residence frequented by Robinson — at 830 Hampton Ave. — the morning of May 8. Inside, they found drugs and paraphernalia, court documents indicate.

The Robinson traffic stop came as he headed alone south on the Thruway, according to court documents. Agents searched his car and found a bag containing 80 grams of cocaine hidden under the hood. Investigators also found a scale, according to the federal complaint.

Investigators then turned to the Hampton Avenue address. Inside, they found 75 grams of heroin, along with 25 grams of crack cocaine and 300 grams of powder cocaine, according to court documents.

They also found ceramic and glass mixing cups, four scales and cutting agents, according to papers.

Paperwork filed since Robinson's arrest identifies his alleged business partner as Jose Gilberto Harris, 57, of Manhattan.

The overall investigation began in August 2016 by the FBI's Safe Streets task force as investigators looked into Robinson, according to court documents.

Investigators in February won permission to intercept Robinson's communications and soon determined Harris to be his partner. 

The intercepts caught the two in March and April using code to schedule cocaine pickups in New York City for delivery to Schenectady, according to the complaint. Robinson even talked business, identifying a period in March as "crazy ... slow," according to the complaint. By April 16, business had picked up again — "traffic backup is crazy," Robinson allegedly told Harris. 

The complaint against Harris identifies him as being on parole for murder. State records indicate he received 23 years to life in the Bronx in 1977 for second-degree murder and robbery and was released to parole in 2015.

Charged in the cocaine and crack cocaine conspiracy along with Robinson and Harris are: Lashaunda Tarver, 38, of Schenectady; Yusef Boothman, aka "Rocket," 38, of Schenectady; Bobby R. Graham, 50, of Albany; Shenika D. Boyd, aka "Misses," 37, of Albany; Marty Humphrey, 65, of Schenectady; Jalessa Scott, 26, of Schenectady; Willie C. Hayes, aka "Man," 45, of Schenectady; Kimberly Petties, aka "Shorty," 48, of Schenectady; Manuel Clemente, 61, of Manhattan

Robinson is also charged along with Corey White Jr., aka "Stacks," 34, of Schenectady, with heroin possession and distribution.

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