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11 members of New York’s Bully Gang charged in drug ring operation between Maine and Rikers Island

According to complaints, several members of a drug ring operated in Maine, New York, and elsewhere.
Credit: WikiMedia Commons
United States Courthouse - Eastern District of New York in Brooklyn.

BROOKLYN, N.Y. — Two criminal complaints were unsealed Thursday in federal court in Brooklyn charging 11 members and associates of the New York City-based Bully street gang with crimes related to conspiracies to distribute drugs throughout Maine and in New York, smuggling drugs into Rikers Island, illegal weapons possession and money laundering.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office Eastern District of New York says according to the complaints, Ayers, Clarke, Govan, Huard, Jessica Pelkey, Walton and Demetrius Wright are members of a drug ring operating in New York, Maine and elsewhere. The organization trafficked cocaine base (or “crack”), heroin, and other controlled substances using vehicles with hidden compartments and “trap” houses in Maine to store and sell narcotics.

During searches of premises Thursday in Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York, law enforcement officials found multiple firearms; a substantial amount of U.S. currency; drug manufacturing and packaging supplies; law enforcement paperwork pertaining to criminal investigations and narcotics believed to include marijuana, crack cocaine, heroin and fentanyl.

The initial appearances of six defendants arrested Thursday in Brooklyn and New Jersey—alleged Bully gang member Derrick Ayers and gang associates Bermon Clarke, Amy Sonnenblick, Nia Govan, Paul Harris and Anthony Kennedy—are scheduled for Thursday afternoon before United States Chief Magistrate Judge Cheryl L. Pollak. Defendant Amanda Walton was arrested in Maine. Defendant Amanda Huard is currently not in custody. The remaining defendants were previously incarcerated.

“As alleged, these defendants trafficked narcotics between Maine and New York, including smuggling dangerous contraband drugs into Rikers Island,” United States Attorney Donoghue said. “Drug dealers, and those who launder their drug proceeds, destroy lives and communities and, in this case, jeopardized the safety and security of a prison.”

Donoghue expressed his grateful appreciation to the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency, the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Maine, New Hampshire State Police, Maine State Police, Brewer Maine Police Department, Waterville Maine Police Department, and Augusta Maine Police Department for their assistance in the case.

“These arrests will undoubtedly have a significant impact on public safety. As alleged, these gang members and their associates plagued communities from New York City to Maine, but today, thanks to the diligent work of the ATF/NYPD Joint Firearms Task Force, their criminal exploits have been brought to an end,” ATF Special Agent-in-Charge DeVito said.

“The NYPD’s responsibility to prevent crime and keep people safe knows no boundaries. In this case, our hardworking detectives and law enforcement partners dismantled an alleged drug gang with a complex distribution network that crossed state lines and penetrated Rikers Island,” NYPD Commissioner Shea said.

Ayers, Clarke, Govan, Huard, Pelkey, Walton and Wright are charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute heroin and at least 280 grams of crack cocaine; Ayers and Clarke are charged with possessing one or more firearms in relation to the drug conspiracy; Ayers, Clarke, Govan, Sonnenblick and Walton are charged with money laundering conspiracy; and Harrell, Harris and Kennedy are charged with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute K2.

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