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Police arrest 10 people and seize guns, drugs and cash in a sweep launched early Wednesday

By Maureen Boyle
Posted Jul 24, 2008 @ 12:48 AM

Investigators working for nearly a year cracked a heroin distribution ring that was pumping the deadly drug into the region, and arrested on Wednesday nearly a dozen people in raids throughout the city.
Brockton, state and federal investigators arrested 10 people and seized guns, drugs and cash in a sweep launched early Wednesday.
"This should make a difference, at least for now, until someone else tries to step in," Police Chief William Conlon said about the drug pipeline.
Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz said ridding the area of heroin is a top priority.
"Heroin is a dangerous and deadly drug that has claimed the lives of many young people in our community. We are committed to finding the people who deal in this poison and take them off of our streets," Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz said.
The probe, which targeted heroin supplies to the area, was started by Brockton narcotics Detective Robert Diliddo nearly a year ago, then was expanded to include the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, state police, the Plymouth County District Attorney's Office and the Cape Cod Drug Task Force.
Authorities, armed with warrants, fanned out early Wednesday to track down suspects and raid houses.
Nine men and one woman were arrested by investigators on gun and drug charges. The investigation centered on heroin sales in the city.
Details on who was arrested and more information about the investigation are expected to be released today, when the suspects are scheduled to be arraigned.
The arrests come a week after a dozen people were arrested by Raynham and Taunton police after a months-long investigation into the sale of prescription opioids and crack cocaine in those communities.
In recent years, heroin has been taking a steady and deadly toll in the greater Brockton-Taunton area, The Enterprise found in two special reports, "Wasted Youth" and "Deadly Surge," published last year.
A review of death certificates in 28 local communities by the paper found 113 people died of opiate overdoses between Jan. 1, 2004, and Aug. 31, 2007, and 31 died of overdoses of oxycodone, the chief ingredient in the highly addictive painkiller OxyContin.
Nationally, the use of heroin and opiates has continued to rise among eighth-graders and high school students, according to the yearly survey, Monitoring the Future. The number of high school seniors reported ingesting heroin rose from 0.6 percent in 2006 to 1.0 percent in 2007.
The use of the powerful and highly addictive painkiller OxyContin, the drug called the gateway to cheap heroin, has also continued to increase among the young, the survey found.
The survey found 1.8 percent of eighth-graders reported using OxyContin, 3.9 percent of 10th-graders and 5.2 percent of seniors, according to the survey.
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