Then, April 5 he was allegedly caught with the 105 pounds of cocaine. Martinez was arrested Friday on Route 495 north between Route 133 and Interstate 93 around 1 p.m.
Detectives found a suitcase and a duffel bag containing 41 kilogram blocks of cocaine in the back of the Dodge Durango Martinez was driving. “The block shapes were vacuum sealed individually and through my training and experience were believed to be bulk amounts of cocaine. Two different blocks were field tested for cocaine and the test came back positive for cocaine,” Trooper James McTeague wrote in his report.
After his arrest, detectives searching Martinez’s rented home seizing $10,000 cash, two loaded firearms, 100 bullets, an industrial grade money counter, digital scale, vacuum sealer and miscellaneous paperwork and documents. Forlizzi noted neither Martinez nor his wife have a license to carry a firearm.
As part of the investigation, detectives from the Essex County Drug Task Force were watching hotels in the area as they are commonly used for drug meetings and buys. Martinez was identified by detectives “as an individual making frequent hotel visits with extremely short stays,” Teague wrote.
Police said Martinez frequently left his home with what appeared to be empty bags and drove different rental cars. A background investigation showed Martinez had $100,000 seized from him by federal agents in Los Angeles last fall, according to McTeague’s report.
On March 9, detectives watched as Martinez left his home with “two large box-shaped items.” He put them in the rear of a black 2013 Ford Explorer, registered to a rental car company. He then drove to Tewksbury, pulling behind the Holiday Inn on Route 133. At that time, Martinez is believed to have stashed 19 bags containing $949,210 cash in the back of the tractor-trailer. “The bags of cash were secreted in five cardboard boxes,” McTeague wrote.
The tractor-trailer occupants denied any knowledge or ownership of the money found in the trailer, according to court papers.