QUEENS — Dozens of people were charged Thursday stemming from massive drug sweeps at public housing developments in Astoria and Long Island City, officials announced.
The Queens District Attorney's office said 28 people were indicted and 23 others arrested for selling drugs to undercover cops during anti-drug operations at the Queensbridge Houses in Long Island City and the Ravenswood Houses in Astoria, Queens.
Of those who have been indicted, fifteen are in custody while thirteen are still being sought, according to the Queens DA. The defendants, who range in age from 18 to 57, are charged with selling heroin, cocaine, oxycodone, methamphetamine and marijuana to undercover police officers on hundreds of separate occasions over an eight month span from 2012 - 2013.
Officials said the undercover investigation began in August of 2012, and was a joint effort by the NYPD’s Queens Narcotics Division and District Attorney Richard Brown’s Narcotics Investigation Bureau to crack down on drug trafficking in the two NYCHA complexes.
“NYPD officers patrol and perform dangerous undercover work in public housing developments to protect law-abiding New Yorkers who are disproportionately afflicted by illicit drugs and violence," Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said in a statement.