Federal Agents report after intercepting a package from China destined to an address in the US, that contained an “unknown white powder” type substance later determined to be ecstasy.
MASTIC, NY — A Queens man has been taken into custody after a raid revealed he was allegedly operating a drug lab in Mastic, according to a complaint filed with the United States District Court, eastern district of New York. According to a complaint filed on Dec. 14 by Kevin Russell, special agent, United States Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, Joseph Guida,44, of Elmhurst, and an employee of the New York City Department of Environmental Protection, was running the lab out of a Mastic residence. Charges against Guida were not yet revealed; Guida was detained by United States Magistrate Judge Kathleen Tomlinson. Guida’s attorney, Randi Chavis of the Long Island Federal Defenders office, was not immediately available for comment.
HSI’s Customs and Border Protection intercepted a package on Dec. 5 mailed from China to Guida’s home, the complaint said. “Before the package was delivered, a border search was conducted, which revealed the presence of a white, powdery substance;” a subsequent analysis revealed the substance to be MDMA, or ecstasy, the complaint said. On Dec. 13, Russell said he and other law enforcement officers went to Guida’s Queens home; Guida later said in a recorded call, “in substance,” that he maintained a Mastic residence “which he used as a ‘cook lab’ to produce quantities of MDMA” and that he also cultivated marijuana there, the complaint stated.
A search warrant was obtained and led to the discovery, at the Mastic home, of barrels of chemicals, test tubes, beakers and powders “consistent with the production of MDMA for sale,”; the odor was also consistent, the complaint said. Due to the danger posed by the volatile chemicals, hazmat suits were worn by those on the scene and access to the street was closed off, the complaint added. The Department of Homeland Security investigation, according to Rachael Yong Yow, ICE spokesperson, led to the home on Roda Drive where the drug lab was operating. Homeland Security conducted the investigation with assistance from the Suffolk County Police Department, Yong Yow said. The home was empty at the time of the raid, Yong Yow said. The investigation is ongoing, she said.
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