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Massachusetts, Fall River, Somerset, Brockton and Seekonk Police arrest suspected trafficker, several drugs, gun seized



Photo courtesy of Massachusetts State Police

A suspected narcotics trafficker – who was dealing fentanyl pills disguised as oxycodone, as well as other drugs — was arrested Monday as part of a joint investigation by a Massachusetts State Police drug task force, Somerset Police and Fall River Police Detectives, and K9 teams from Brockton and Seekonk Police.

According to Dave Procopio of Massachusetts State Police, on Tuesday, as part of the same investigation, Troopers and Officers executed search warrants on a Toyota Camry used by the suspect, as well as at residences in Somerset and Fall River both used by him.

The target of the investigation, 30-year-old Bestlee Vasquez, has been charged with trafficking fentanyl, trafficking cocaine, unlawful possession of a firearm, and unlawful possession of ammunition.

The investigation was initiated in February by the South Unit of the State Police Commonwealth Interstate Narcotics Reduction and Enforcement Team along with Somerset and Fall River Officers after intelligence revealed that Vasquez was distributing fentanyl pills passed off as 30 milligram oxycodone pills, powdered fentanyl, and cocaine in the greater Fall River area. The MSP’s CINRET-South task force comprised of State Troopers, local police officers, federal agents and a National Guard analyst.

Vasquez was known to State Police and local police from intelligence collected in prior narcotics investigations. During the most recent investigation, Troopers and Officers developed information into Vasquez’s current trafficking operation, method of transportation, and “stash” locations where he kept his drug supply.

On Monday, as investigators conducted surveillance of the target, they learned of information that led them to arrest Vasquez on child endangerment charges. After a police dog certified in narcotics detection alerted to the exterior of the Toyota Camry the suspect was using, the vehicle was towed to a State Police facility and secured for a search warrant.

That warrant was executed on Tuesday. Inside the vehicle, investigators located and seized hundreds of fentanyl pills disguised as oxycodone with a total weight of approximately 208 grams, 110 grams of suspected powdered fentanyl, and 541 grams of suspected cocaine.

The same day, CINRET-South Troopers and Task Force Officers and Fall River and Somerset Officers obtained and executed search warrants at residences connected to Vasquez on St. Joseph Street in Fall River and Thurber Avenue in Somerset. The warrant teams seized a 9mm pistol and ammunition from the Somerset location and additional ammunition from the Fall River location.

In a firepit outside the Somerset residence, investigators observed smoldering objects. Burned bags recovered from the firepit were field-tested and were positive for the presence of cocaine.

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