09/12/12 — Cocaine charges filed

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Cocaine charges filed

By John Joyce
Published in News on September 12, 2012 1:46 PM

PRINCETON -- A DWI checkpoint held by the Princeton Police Department on Saturday led to the seizure of a large amount of cocaine and charges against three men.

The checkpoint, held in conjunction with other law enforcement agencies from both Johnston and Wayne counties, resulted in multiple drug charges and the seizure of 831 grams of pure cocaine along with $98,871 in cash.

Alejandro Quintinia-Gomez, 25, of Fremont, Armando Nava, 24, of Clayton, and Uriel Ramirez Duenez, 31, of New York, were charged with trafficking in cocaine by manufacturing, trafficking in cocaine by transportation and trafficking in cocaine by possession.

They are each being held in the Johnston County Jail under $1 million secured bonds.

Princeton police Chief Tyrone Sutton said it was the second major drug seizure this summer resulting from a DWI checkpoint.

The checkpoints are set up as part of the Governor's Highway Safety Program.

"The street value of the cocaine if sold as is by the gram would be about $42,000. Once cut and sold, it would be about $500,000," Sutton said.

The first seizure his officers made, in June, netted 10 kilos of the drug and $39,000.

"These DWI checkpoints are very helpful, I think a lot of people think of U.S. 70 as a safe haven," Sutton said. He said criminals often detour from I-95 to avoid federal agencies and Highway Patrol drug enforcement campaigns.

"A lot of traffickers use 70 as a conduit away from 95, so these checkpoints are very valuable," he said.