Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

Opinion

April 18, 2013

Trafficking arrest shatters comforting illusions

(Continued)

A background investigation showed Martinez had $100,000 seized from him by federal agents in Los Angeles last fall, according to McTeague’s report. When questioned, Martinez “had no logical reason for having this money,” detectives said.

On March 9, detectives watched Martinez as he drove from his home to the Holiday Inn on Route 133 in Tewksbury. There, they say they saw Martinez stash what turned out to be 19 bags containing $949,210 cash in the back of a tractor-trailer parked there.

On April 5, detectives again followed Martinez to the Holiday Inn parking lot. He parked the Durango next to a silver Nissan Maxima with California plates. After some small talk, the trunk of the Maxima opened. “Moments later, surveillance observed Martinez remove what appeared to be a large suitcase and a duffel bag and transfer them to the rear compartment of the Durango,” McTeague wrote.

Troopers later pulled Martinez over on I-495 and found the cocaine.

The evidence of drug trafficking on this scale in the immediate area is frightening. Drugs and ill-gotten money in these quantities lead inevitably to violence and death. Credit goes to the state police and the Essex County district attorney’s Drug Task Force for the arrest.

We encourage them to continue their investigation and hope they will be able to get these dangerous traffickers off our streets.

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