ROWLEY -- Police here have made one of their largest drug busts in recent months thanks to the actions of an alert officer, bagging a Boston man allegedly caught in the act of selling heroin and cocaine.
Jose Lugo-Rivera, 36, of Dorchester, remains in jail on $200,000 cash bond after being arraigned in Newburyport District Court yesterday on heroin and cocaine distribution charges. The case against Lugo-Rivera, who was convicted of drug distribution and illegal possession of a firearm in 2006, is now spreading to Boston, where more drugs were found in his home.
Rowley Patrolman Matthew Kiev was on a routine patrol along Route 1 Thursday at around 3:20 p.m. when he spotted a black Ford Escape that an Ipswich detective had reported was believed to be involved in drug deals that had taken place in the area.
Kiev followed the car to 2 Glen St., a location where drug deals have been known to take place. He knocked on the car door, and when Lugo-Rivera opened it, Kiev spotted a bag of what appeared to be cocaine.
More bags were soon found, and a state police K-9 unit sniffed out a drug “hide” in the car that contained cocaine and heroin, according to the report. In all, 67 grams of cocaine valued at $5,320, and 24 grams of heroin, valued at $1,900, were found in Lugo-Rivera’s car. Police also found $484 in cash, three cellphones, and kits for testing drugs.
Police Chief Robert Barker said the bust was one of the largest busts made in Rowley in recent months. He said it’s not believed to be connected to another significant bust that occurred in Rowley in June, when police discovered a lab inside a storage unit in which a Georgetown man was producing a recreational drug called “Special K.”
The Rowley charges carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, per charge.
Barker said Lugo-Rivera could perhaps be a low- or mid-level player in a drug distribution network. Rowley police contacted Boston police, who obtained a search warrant to investigate his home. There, Boston police found 58 grams of cocaine and 46 grams of heroin, with a street value of about $10,400. It’s expected that Lugo-Rivera will face charges from the Boston police for those drugs.