Ten Anne Arundel County residents have been charged in connection with the operation of a large, multi-state, drug trafficking organization that spanned from Maryland to California.
Of the list of suspects arrested, two are from Arnold.
Martin Dandy, 31, of Arnold has been charged by indictment with conspiring to distribute 1,000 kilograms or more of marijuana, and with conspiring to launder the drug proceeds. Alexandros Lineberry, 36, of Arnold, is charged by complaint with marijuana conspiracy.
“The Drug Enforcement Administration, working in partnership with both federal and local law enforcement, including the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Maryland, are bringing to justice 18 members of a narcotic trafficking organization operating throughout the United States,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge Robert Brisolari of DEA’s Washington Division in a press release. “As a result of this investigation, numerous properties, vehicles and bank accounts have been seized totalling millions of dollars.”
The complaint was filed on Monday but was unsealed on Tuesday along with indictments after the execution of search warrants at 17 residences and businesses in Maryland, five in New Jersey and one in California.
Approximately 250 law enforcement agents participated in the execution of the search and arrest warrants on Tuesday, according to the release. At least 30 vehicles, 60 pounds of marijuana, $300,000 in cash and 35 firearms were seized.
Officials also arrested two other Marylanders, two men from New Jersey, a man from Texas and a man from Minnesota.
The investigation started when Frederick Thomas 31, of Glen Burnie, was in a car accident on Route 100 at Quarterfield Road in Anne Arundel County on Jan. 7, officials said. Anne Arundel County police officers reportedly discovered a shrink-wrapped package with 590 grams of marijuana, a money counting machine, a tally sheet and 126 bank money bands for $2,000, according to authorities.
The indictment alleges that Kerem Dayi, 40, of Gambrills, was the leader of a multi-state drug trafficking ring dealing primarily in marijuana, but also dealing in cocaine, steroids and diverted pharmaceuticals.
Dayi is accused of using contacts in California and New Jersey to ship at least 20 pounds of marijuana and to drive between 50 to 400 pounds into Maryland on a regular basis. The indictment alleges that he used houses rented and managed by members of his organization to move the drugs and money between Maryland, California, Ohio and New Jersey.
Anthony Caesar Santoiemma, 43, of Annapolis, is accused of being one of those members. According to the indictment, Santoiemma would sew money into handbags and hire young women to fly these bags from Baltimore Washington International Airport to California as payment for the shipments.
According to the affidavits, Dayi then supplied the marijuana to Scott Russell Segal, 31, of Glen Burnie. Segal is accused of being Dayi's wholesale distributor for Anne Arundel County and maintaining a stash house off Interstate 97.
The organization also allegedly established an eBay online auction business named Krush, NYC, LLC, to use as a front for marijuana distribution and to launder money.
Krush sold liquidated shoes, clothing and accessories on eBay from a warehouse in Jessup. The warehouse was also allegedly used to distribute marijuana.
The indictment seeks a judgment of at least $10 million and the forfeiture of eight properties, 22 bank account and 24 vehicles, according to the release.
All of the defendants face a maximum sentence of life in prison for the drug conspiracy, and the 14 defendants charged in the indictment with money laundering conspiracy face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
Initial appearances of the defendants arrested in Maryland began at 2 p.m. on Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore.