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  Posted by James Brierton
  January - 25 - 2011 0 Comments

Smithtown, NY ( – Drug dealers from Smithtown and Kings Park were among 23 arrested in what Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota is calling “one of the largest herion busts in the county.”

Richard Balanda, 29, of 122 Brooksite Drive, was charged with second degree conspiracy for allegedly selling heroin.

Also arrested, Michelle Mehling, 22, of Kings Park, who is facing the same charge. Mehling graduated from Kings Park High School in 2007.

Spota made the announcement during a press conference in Hauppauge Tuesday. He says the ring sold 15,000 bags of herion a week between Suffolk and Queens.

Prosecutor Beth Creighton credits the ring with raising the  street  value of the drug from $100 for 10 bags to nearly $150 for the same quantity, reports Newsday.

The fear of herion and other drugs in the Smithtown community is nothing new. Smithtown schools and superintendent Ed Ehmann uses programs like Parent University to bring together parents and drug experts. The district began the innovative several years ago as the community became more concerned about the use of herion in Smithtown.

“The Ringleaders:”
Charged with operating as a major drug trafficker, a class A felony with a penalty of 25 years to life in prison.

Carlos Melendez, 32, of the Bronx

Joel Guzman, 27, of Queens

Ricardo Rifino, 29, of Sayville

“The Mastermind:”

Frank Conte, of the Bronx, who was out on $1 million bail while awaiting trail in a 2007 slaying of a Bronx bartender

Also charged, as conspirators:

Jeremy Guzman, 29, of Queens

Michelle Mehling, 22, of Kings Park

Matthew Capozello, 29, of Selden

Ryan Walsh, 27, of Hampton Bays

John Crowley, 50, of Centereach

Anthony Stelluto, 36, of Williston Park

Elizabeth Zapata, 29, of the Bronx

Nicole Albrecht, 27, of Sayville

Ruben Torres, 24, of Brentwood

Paul Ferry, 29, of East Islip

Kenneth Plass, 33, of Centereach

Craig Kellaher, 40, of Selden

Neil Varma, 26, of the Bronx

Jason Siani, 24, of Sayville

Jason Grzymalski, 31, of Holtsville

William Wisnieski, 27, of Holtsville

Daniel Eagan, 48, of Huntington

Michael Jankite, 29, of Brentwood

Richard Balanda, 28, of Smithtown

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