by Alex Lloyd Gross
Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced the arrest of 23 suspected drug dealers in the latest Kensington Initiative during a press conference held today. It was at the McVeigh Recreation Center on D Street that he stood before the press and said that two males, Curtis Coates Sr. and his son, Curtis Coates Jr. allegedly rented several street corners and allowed drug dealers to sell Fenanyl, heroin and other drugs in front of playgrounds, Shapiro said.
The two were paid up to $3000.00 a week by dealers. They did not own the corners, “They stole the corners, from citizens,” Shapiro said. The sales went on 24 hours a day, with huge profits being made. during yesterday’s raid, Agents also seized 29 firearms including , 2,489 grams, or 82,966 doses, of heroin/Fentanyl, 47 grams of meth, and $179,000 in cash. No ghost guns were found.
According to Shapiro, the source of the drugs is being investigated. He did say that his office found that drugs are coming in through the US Mail. Of those arrested, at least seven were in possession of a gun in spite of the fact they were not allowed to have one. In one instance, Moises Rivera was found to have four active bench warrants out for him as well as him being on probation for drug charges, Shapiro said.
Shapiro said that his office is requesting high bail for the defendants Curtis Coates Sr. is being held on $3 million bail. His son is under a million bail. Authorities said that the accused cannot use money they got from ill gotten gains to bail out of jail. Bail money has to be accountable, Shapiro said.
This is the seventh press conference held since 2018 for the Kensington Initiative It is the first time that agents saw street corners being rented for the purpose of selling drugs . Agents also seized several ATV’s and recovered five ATV’s that were reported stolen. In spite of the violent nature of the drug trade, no agents or suspects were hurt during the arrests.
“We are not going anywhere,” Shapiro said. Since the initiative, he said when an area has been cleared, dealers have not returned to that area.