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26 accused in drug, gun trafficking case

US, state charges filed over alleged sales in Brockton


By Travis AndersenGlobe Staff / April 30, 2011


Twenty-six people were arrested yesterday for allegedly selling drugs and guns in Brockton after a lengthy investigation into weapons and narcotic trafficking in the area, authorities said. The suspects are facing charges in state and federal court.


A news conference included (from left) Plymouth District Attorney Timothy Cruz, US Attorney Carmen Ortiz, Brockton Mayor Linda Balzotti, Brockton Police Chief William Conlon, ATF official Guy Thomas, and Plymouth Sheriff Joseph McDonald Jr. (George Rizer for The Boston Globe)

Their alleged purchases and sales in the city were captured on undercover recordings beginning in May of last year, according to a statement released by the office of US Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz.

Christina DiIorio-Sterling, a spokeswoman for Ortiz, said six additional suspects are facing charges. They were either already in prison or still at large yesterday, she said.

Bridget Norton Middleton, a spokeswoman for the Plymouth district attorney’s office, said the two suspects at large are facing state charges. She declined to name them.

DiIorio-Sterling said authorities recovered 47 weapons in raids yesterday, as well as hundreds of rounds of ammunition. She said a semi-automatic machine gun and three sawed-off shotguns were among the weapons recovered. She would only say the case is under investigation when asked if the suspects were all part of the same alleged drug and gun ring.

The suspects facing charges in federal court live in Boston, Brockton, Revere, and Stoughton, and range in age from 18 to 41, according to Ortiz. They are being charged with several offenses, including dealing in firearms without a license and possession with intent to distribute cocaine base.

According to court documents filed in federal court, two suspects, Hilary Holden, 29, of Revere, and Darius Gibson, 21, of Boston, also known as “Wiz,’’ sold several rounds of ammunition and a 22-caliber revolver to an unnamed cooperating witness in Brockton over a two-day period in June.

During one transaction, Gibson asked the witness if he knew a good place to do “sticks,’’ or robberies, court documents show.

Holden is being charged with conspiracy to traffic in firearms without a license and has prior weapons convictions, according to records. Gibson is charged with being a felon in possession of ammunition. An attorney for Gibson could not be located last night, and Holden’s lawyer, John H. Cunha Jr. of Boston, did not immediately return messages.

Another one of the suspects charged in federal court, Maurice Williams, 24, of Brockton, is a convicted felon who was allegedly in possession of a rifle, two magazines, and 28 rounds of ammunition in August, according to court records. He is facing one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

His attorney, Derege B. Demissie of Cambridge, said Williams denies the new charges and recently started a new job. He declined to say where Williams has been working. His arraignment and detention hearing are scheduled for Tuesday, court records show.

Demissie said he believes his client should be charged in state court. He said federal court is usually reserved for people accused of involvement in “[the] Mafia, drugs, heavy trafficking.’’

DiIorio-Sterling said the federal suspects made initial courtroom appearances yesterday but did not enter pleas. They are all being held pending their upcoming detention hearings.

The defendants charged in state court live in Brockton and Raynham and are charged with similar offenses, according to Ortiz’s office. They range in age from 18 to 46, the statement said. Middleton said most of the suspects were arraigned yesterday in Brockton District Court and not guilty pleas were entered on their behalf.

Travis Andersen can be reached at tandersen@globe.com.

Clarification: Because of incorrect information provided to the Globe, this story in Saturday’s Metro section mischaracterized one of the weapons seized as a semiautomatic machine gun. The weapon was a fully automatic firearm.

© Copyright 2011 Globe Newspaper Company.