Last modified: Saturday, July 17, 2010 12:02 AM EDT Lynn man among pair nabbed for Oxycontin trafficking By Laura

Paine / The Daily Item LYNN - An anonymous source assisted police in the arrest of a man who was illegally selling Oxycontin pills purchased in New York. Adriano Almonte, 31, of 5 Newcastle St. was arrested and charged with trafficking over 200 grams of a Class A substance, Oxycontin, and drug violation near a school, Sacred Heart Elementary. He was arraigned on Friday by Judge Stacy Fortes-White, who ordered Almonte held on $150,000 cash bail. Rafael Gomez, 32, of 130 Summer St., Boston, was also arrested and charged with trafficking over 200 grams of a Class A substance, Oxycontin, and drug violation near a school, Sacred Heart Elementary. Fortes-White arraigned him on Friday and also ordered him held on $150,000 cash bail. Both men are being held at the Essex County Correctional Facility in Middleton and have a probable cause hearing scheduled on Aug. 18. Police began an investigation into the illegal sale of narcotics originating from 5 Newcastle St. during the first week of July. An anonymous party, whose identity is known by police, said Almonte drives a green Toyota Camry and he and Gomez, who drives a Honda Accord, were both actively involved in the illegal sale of Oxycontin pills. The informant also said the two men send a runner to New York by bus to purchase large quantities of the drug. A man identified as Chambra was also allegedly involved. Police were able to confirm the green Toyota was owned by Almonte. Throughout the next two weeks, police spoke with the informant 10 times and learned Gomez and Almonte had purchased a large quantity of Oxycontin pills and would carry a large quantity of the drug in a secret compartment in the Camry to another address. At 9:30 p.m. on Thursday, police observed Almonte's vehicle and Gomez's vehicle parked in front of the Newcastle residence. At 9:45 p.m., the men entered the Camry and drove to a Spanish grocery store on Boston Street at the corner of Laurel Street. Police stopped the men as they exited the vehicle and proceeded to search them, but there were no narcotics on their persons. As officers searched the vehicle they discovered a molding around the instrumental panel was loose and the screws that held the molding in place were missing. Police removed the molding and recovered a black plastic baggie containing several other plastic baggies, each containing large quantities of 80 milligram Oxycontin pills. A further check revealed an additional bag with the same pills inside. After being arrested, Gomez stated he knew about the pills and said they belonged to him and Almonte. He said they were 80 milligrams each and there were approximately 600 of them. Almonte also stated he knew the pills were in the car and they belonged to him and Gomez. Seven plastic baggies were seized containing 709 pills. The pills were then weighed and found to be in excess of 200 grams. $262 was taken from Almonte and $890 was taken from Gomez. Four cell phones were also confiscated as evidence.

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