More than 20 suspected Internet drug dealers were arrested by the NYPD amid renewed efforts to crack down on online drug dealing.
Police said they launched "Operation Dot Com" to stop some alleged online drug dealers who were using Craigslist to sell heroin, cocaine and Ecstasy as well as hundreds of prescription pills.
Undercover officers bought more than 1,000 pills off Craigslist, including drugs like Ambien, Percocet, Vicodin, Xanax and Valium. Investigators said $19,000 dollars in drugs were purchased over an 11-month period.
“There is an epidemic of prescription drug addiction and abuse in New York that is ruining lives and producing violent crime,” NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly said.
Among those charged in the ongoing operation: former New York City teacher’s aide Mariel Javier; Jennifer Sultan, a dot-com entrepreneur accused of selling 300 pills online; Scott Aria of West 186th Street; and Nicholas Baily of Remsen Avenue in Brooklyn.
Information on their attorneys was not immediately available.
"Whether the drug deal occurs on the corner or on the Internet, it’s a crime," said New York Special Narcotics Prosecutor Bridget Brennan.
The arrests began as early as December 2011 and continued through Thursday with two new arrests.
Many of the 21 suspects have pleaded not guilty to criminal sale of a controlled substance charges that have been filed in Manhattan Criminal Court.