AG: large drug network centered in Albany busted

The state Attorney General's office announced today that a team of law enforcement agencies busted 52 people allegedly involved in a drug operation that's centered in Albany's South End neighborhood and associated with the notorious Albany gang Original Gangsta Killas (OGK).

"This investigation has shut down a major network of gang members responsible for the sale of illegal drugs and possession of dangerous weapons in our neighborhoods," said AG Eric Schneiderman in a statement. The AG's office says the operation was trafficking "massive quantities" of cocaine, heroin, and prescription painkillers.

The AG's office says the investigation helped, at least temporarily, short circuit the cycle of violent retaliation between the city's gangs:

Richard Gibbs (aka "50 Cent"), was one of the main subjects of this investigation. Back in February, he was murdered in the South End of Albany by a rival gang. Following that incident, [Organized Crime Task Force] investigators were informed about additional retaliation over authorized wiretaps. This allowed investigators to intercept the gun that was intended to be used in the retaliation attempt. The increasing violence on the streets made it necessary for OCTF to move quickly on this case before there was any more bloodshed. [That link is to a TU story about the shooting. Contrary to the AG's press release, Gibbs was killed this past November. The APD press release about the November shooting is after the jump.]

Of the 52 people charged, 39 are from the immediate Capital Region (4 of them alleged "major traffickers"): 22 from Albany; 9 from Troy; 3 from Schenectady; 2 from Rensselaer; 1 from Watervliet; 1 from East Greenbush; 1 from Saratoga Springs. The network allegedly stretched from NYC, through the Hudson Valley, and into Vermont.

Drugs, gangs, and the accompanying violence are incredibly corrosive to communities, so it's great to see networks like this taken down.

But these sorts of stories also have a whack-a-mole aspect to them. Sure, this group of people has been temporarily neutralized, but there always seems to be someone ready to fill the void. That's not a reason to stop taking out these networks -- though it suggests the solution to the problem is a lot broader and more varied.

Tangent: When there's a huge bust like this, does the street price of the drugs being dealt increase? I-87 is like a conveyor belt of drugs into this area (seriously, law enforcement agencies basically just wait at the I-787 interchange for the stuff to roll in). We're curious about how long it takes for the market to react.

Earlier on AOA: Pot prices around New York State
____

APD: Fatal shooting on Fourth Ave (November 29, 2011)
Albany police are investigating a homicide early this morning in the area of Fourth Avenue and Clinton Street.
The 25 year old male victim was shot while driving his car on Fourth Avenue just after 1:00 a.m. After being shot the victim and his vehicle struck a front porch in front of 105 Fourth Avenue and continued on eastbound before hitting and coming to rest on a light pole at Fourth Avenue and South Pearl Street.
Richard Gibbs of Rutland Street was treated at the scene for a gunshot wound to his upper body. He was transported to Albany Medical Center where he was later pronounced dead.
No suspect information is available at this time.
Detectives and officers canvassed the neighborhood for witnesses and evidence this morning.

Comments

what recession??? now there are a large amount of black-market job openings in albany...

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

Recently on All Over Albany

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! We hope you get a chance to relax and spend some time with family and friends. Also: Maybe eat some pie. Because pie... (more)

Capital Region holiday markets 2017

The unofficial official holiday shopping season starts up Friday. If you're looking for something a little bit different -- craftier, handmade, more independent, fair trade... (more)

What's up in the Neighborhood

Among the topics in this most recent spin around the Capital Region's online neighborhood: old signs, public baths, mountain biking, hiking, new woods, the Adirondack... (more)

Tracking the paths of many steps

Maybe you've seen this heat map of activity posted by the exercise tracking service Strava. It basically shows the most popular routes taken by people... (more)

Morning Blend

Accused shooter in Albany death arrested, and dies later in the day Albany police announced Tuesday that they had arrested Taron Robinson, who was accused... (more)

Recent Comments

I'm glad to see people involved in community decisions. But at the same time, we can't just keep saying we want development "somewhere else" or "not in my backyard!". Having mini-suburbs in the city of Albany was feasible at one point in time, and now development is catching up. ...

Albany Book & Paper Fair 2017

...has 1 comment, most recently from Richard Adamiak Ph.D.

Morning Blend for Nov 22

...has 1 comment, most recently from Gabby

As it turns out, Tucker Carlson's understanding of Albany demographics is lacking

...has 18 comments, most recently from -B

Private dorm opposition, a big downtown residential conversion, and other exciting tales of the Albany Planning Board

...has 7 comments, most recently from daleyplanit

Here's every violation issued by the city of Albany over the last three winters for not shoveling a sidewalk

...has 6 comments, most recently from Harriet