Criminal Justice News

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

U.S. Marshals Operation 'Smoke Shops Get Crushed'



Albuquerque, NM - The U.S. Marshals Service in the District New Mexico, with the assistance of the City of Albuquerque, will destroy a large quantity of forfeited drug paraphilia. The drug paraphernalia was seized from numerous “smoke shops” and “head shops” located in Albuquerque, Roswell, Hobbs, and west Texas. The paraphernalia was seized in connection with federal investigations into “spice” and synthetic cannabinoids led by the DEA in collaboration with the FBI and their state and local law enforcement partners, which resulted in cases prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office. During the investigations, search warrants were executed at “smoke shops” and “head shops” leading to the seizure of drug paraphernalia, including glass bongs, glass pipes, and other glassware used to ingest illegal narcotics along with packaging material. In addition to the drug paraphernalia, proceeds from the sale of the illegal sale of “spice” and synthetic cannabinoids and drug paraphernalia were seized and forfeited to the United States Government.

The U.S. Marshals Service is the primary custodian of seized and forfeited property for the Department of Justice’s Asset Forfeiture Program. The asset forfeiture authority is used to remove the financial incentives from crime, depriving criminals of the cash and other assets they rely upon to facilitate their illegal activity against our society, thereby dismantling criminal organizations. These operations make New Mexico a safer place to live and raise families.

The destruction of the drug paraphernalia will take place January 27, 2017 at 2:00 pm at the City of Albuquerque Solid Waste Facility located at, 18000 Cerro Colorado S.W. Albuquerque N.M. There will be an opportunity to take photos of the items to be destroyed immediately before the destruction and the media will be able to film the destruction. U.S. Attorney Damon P. Martinez, Mayor Richard J. Berry, DEA Assistant Special Agent in Charge Sean R. Waite and Assistant Special Agent in Charge Derek A. Fuller will join U.S. Marshal Conrad E. Candelaria in making brief remarks and answering questions immediately before the drug paraphernalia is destroyed.

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