After a two-month investigation by the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force (STRDTF), two major cocaine traffickers were arrested in the Town of Dunkirk and City of Dunkirk. The STRDTF was assisted in the investigation by the Town of Evans Police, Town of Hamburg Police and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). STRDTF arrested Michael L. Pacheco, age 26, of 15 Webster St, Dunkirk, NY, at a location on Vineyard Drive in the Town of Dunkirk on a warrant from the Town of Dunkirk Court. At the time of his arrest, he was found to be in possession of more than 4.5 ounces of cocaine. At 7:10pm, STRDTF agents, Dunkirk Police, Dunkirk Police SRT Team, and the DEA executed a search warrant at 80 Lincoln Avenue in the City of Dunkirk. Entry was made into the residence without incident. It is alleged that Fred A. Santiago, age 29, of 80 Lincoln Ave, Dunkirk, NY, conspired with Pacheco to deliver more than an ounce of cocaine to an agent of the STRDTF within the Town of Dunkirk. During the course of the search, agents seized approximately 28.5 ounces of cocaine (street value of all drugs seized $50,000). Also seized was $46,000 in U.S. currency, postal money orders, scales, packaging materials and a cocaine press which is used to process the cocaine for sale. Additional State and Federal charges will be placed against both subjects as the investigation continues. Pacheco is charged with Criminal Sale controlled substance 2nd – Class A-2 Felony and Conspiracy 2nd degree – B Felony and Santiago is charged with Conspiracy 2nd class B Felony. More charges are expected for both subjects. As a result of this investigation, additional arrests may be forthcoming. The STRDTF is comprised of deputies from the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office and the Dunkirk Police Department. Anyone with information about the sale of narcotics should contact the STRDTF at (800)344-8702.
Dunkirk Police Chief David Ortolano wants the community to know that “Drug trafficking is a priority for our Department. This is a priority for our Task Force Officers, Detectives, Patrol Officers and SRT Unit each and every day. We want to thank the community for their assistance in providing tips and information about Narcotic activity in their neighborhoods. This type of activity affects quality of life in neighborhoods and is unacceptable, we will continue to make this enforcement a priority within our Community. Our confidential tip line is 363-0313 or confidential information can be left at the Police Communications Desk or Chiefs Office.