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DA: Cocaine, Oxycodone Distribution Ringleader Could Face Life in Prison

Massive drug ring stretched across much of Northern Suffolk County and was run by a Town of Brookhaven highway worker, police say.

Six people, including a Town of Brookhaven employee, were busted Thursday for their participation in an alleged cocaine and Oxycodone ring and face serious penalties, including life in prison.

A joint investigation by the Suffolk County District Attorney’s office and the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department began in January 2012, but law enforcement only began using wiretaps three months ago, according to Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota. Although wiretaps were used since September, Spota said the ring has been going on “probably a number of years,” and has been in operation since at least 2010.

The investigation revealed that cocaine and Oxycodone was sold to Town of Brookhaven employees as well as in bars, restaurants, nightclubs, gas station parking lots and bank parking lots. Much of the cocaine found was packaged in “bar bags" adorned with a Maltese cross emblem, and contained .5 grams to 1 gram of cocaine each.

The alleged ringleader was Thomas Forkin, 30, of Miller Place, who was indicted as a major narcotics trafficker, which makes him “subject to imprisonment for the remainder of his natural life,” Spota said.

“Forkin ran the cocaine and Oxydodone ring essentially from Coram down the Route 112 corridor into the villages of Port Jefferson, Setauket, Stony Brook, and on east to Rocky Point and to the west all the way down to Lake Grove,” he said.

The charges Forkin faces include operating as a major trafficker, second-degree conspiracy, first-degree attempted criminal possession of a controlled substance, second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, six counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, fourth-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, and second-degree criminally using drug paraphernalia.

Spota said Forkin, a Brookhaven Town Highway worker, ran the ring on highway department time and from town-owned vehicles.

Thomas Gironda, a former NYPD officer with street narcotics in Queens County, allegedly stored the drugs for Forkin in his Setauket business, New Look Concrete.

Gironda, 44, of Setauket, faces felony charges that include second-degree conspiracy, second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, two counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and fourth-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Forkin’s top distributor of Oxycodone, according to Spota, was Anthony Perretta, 30, of Lake Grove.

Perretta, a welder by trade, faces charges that include second-degree conspiracy, a felony, second-degree criminally using drug paraphernalia and seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, which are both misdemeanors.

Johnny Vargas, 30, of South Setauket, was the main supplier of cocaine and seller of the cocaine in the nightclubs, according to Spota. During a search of Vargas’ home cocaine packaged for sale was found as well as scales and packaging materials.

Vargas, an electrician, faces charges that include second-degree conspiracy, third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, fourth-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance — all felonies — and second-degree criminally using drug paraphernalia.

Timothy Ruttura, 35, of South Setauket, is a heavy equipment operator in New York City, and according to Spota, would pay his coworkers to claim they had sustained injuries on the job to get prescriptions from doctors for Oxycodone, and would then sell it to Forkin.

Spota said Ruttura resisted arrest during the execution of the search warrant and tried to take a gun belonging to one of the emergency service police officers. During a struggle Ruttura sustained injuries.

Ruttura faces charges that include second-degree conspiracy, third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, second-degree criminally using drug paraphernalia, third-degree attempted robbery, and resisting arrest.

Joseph Finch, 25, of Miller Place, allegedly sold the drugs throughout the nightclub scene in Port Jefferson, Stony Brook, Rocky Point and Setauket, Spota said. Finch faces a charge of second-degree conspiracy.

Not included in Forkin’s ring, but arrested during the investigation was Carlos Cabrera, 28, of Port Jefferson Station. Cabrera, who Spota said is a member of the Trinitarios street gang, allegedly sold cocaine in Port Jefferson and Port Jefferson Station. Cabrera faces three counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and three counts of third-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance.

The investigation also revealed that Town of Brookhaven Highway Department employees, who are subject to random drug testing, could have been tipped-off when they would be tested.

Spota said there is a strong suspicion that the urine submitted by the employees tested did not belong to them.

Brookhaven’s Supervisor Ed Romaine said the highway department operates under its own union with its own testing policy and aside from the town budget the department is “essentially autonomous” from the town.

In response to what the investigation yielded, Romaine said he will meet with the highway superintendent “to discuss ways that we could tighten the procedures and protocols that the highway department uses.” These procedures will be revealed during the Jan. 3, 2013 Town of Brookhaven work session.

Spota said that weapons have also been seized during the investigation.

The investigation remains active.

boops December 20, 2012 at 09:17 PM
no wonder the town roads are a mess.
Dr. Gonzo December 20, 2012 at 09:51 PM
The best part of the story is what a crook Spota is . When he had his own practice , a friend was concerned he was possibly under investigation and gave Spota a retainer . Nothing came out of it and Spota kept his retainer without having ever done anything . At least the guys in this story were actually providing a "good" regardless of its legality To people who wanted it on their own free will .......What a racket this whole system ...And if the ringleader get life in prison i get to pay for that ....The Drug war is an excuse for the militarization of the American police force ....sooner or later we will all be in prison either literally or figuratively. Big brother knows whats best for us all .....
ralph December 20, 2012 at 10:41 PM
Hopefully this slow's down our serious drug problem here on long island.Usually bust up one ring and another one is already up and running.So sad
Michael December 21, 2012 at 12:53 AM
I think if the town would worry more about their drug testing procedures, instead of trying to nab a guy with his truck idled for more the 5 minutes that would be a start.
Michael December 21, 2012 at 12:54 AM
Good
crookhaven December 21, 2012 at 07:42 AM
good job mark lesko and john rouse! town of crackhaven!!
Thirty Year Resident. December 21, 2012 at 12:26 PM
Selling coke and painkillers to addicts is providing a good? Enabling and enlarging what can only be called a prescription drug epidemic is okay because you deem the system a "racket"? It seems you have forgotten David Laffer and the father's day pharmacy shooting in 2011. He just wanted it of his own free will also. It's clear your myopic point of view is driven by some perceived slight against you by the big bad "gub'ment"; which I'm sure you're convinced is trying to tax you into submission and take away all your rights. The fact is there will always be fools like you who attempt to hijack a topic to rail against "the system" which demands you act like a civilized citizen and prevents you from acting in a selfish potentially destructive manner...you are part of the problem.
The Crab Child December 21, 2012 at 03:59 PM
Lock up all these pieces of garbage and throw away the key. Less losers and drugs on our streets!!
No to union December 21, 2012 at 04:52 PM
To bad the guy sitting in the truck for 5 min is probably blasting a line or taking a pill.
Reddawn1 December 21, 2012 at 11:13 PM
Congratulations Mr. Spota and ALL law enforcement for taking the fight directly to the streets. Continue not to over think this scourge on society, GOOD vs. EVIL....PERIOD!!
Mitch Eisenstein December 22, 2012 at 07:36 AM
Meth and crack addicts should be given a choice to either clean up or be drowned in the ocean
Dr. Gonzo December 22, 2012 at 08:05 AM
Thirty Year resident .......Fools like me were once the thin blue line that separates you from Them so pardon my jaded cynicism and considering one of the guys busted was a once was part of that thin line also maybe your missing my point so let me take your little hand and guide you through this .....It aint all Good Guys and Bad guys the line is real blurred ...Now go have a glass of scotch of something and settle down already and lighten up..... yes im part of the problem you are too for believing in the system that aint working ....Its time for a new plan and considering that the head DA is a Crook lawyer i dont think he really cares how he gets paid or how this stupid Drug war is handled etc .. benefits him for more bad guys to come in and thing to stay the same. By the way he was a CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY when he had his own practice so wake up and smell the coffee only to realize you spilt it in your lap hours ago and its cold now ........and yeah the Government and taxes are an issue but youll just go with the program like your told like a good citizen now wont you ...Well I WONT ! So get my Cell ready OK and get your money ready for keeping me away somewhere far up north ......
Alfred e prinzmetal December 22, 2012 at 04:50 PM
Another piece of garbage cop giving all the hard working, honest, true blue officers a bad name. With all the corruption going on in Brookhaven, let's hope this piece of garbage, along with all the others, go bye bye for a long time. One can only imagine what this ex-officer was involved in when he was still on the job. Looks like the Karma bug came back to bite him in his ass! Bye bye Tommy!
Allan Eimer December 27, 2012 at 06:30 PM
Knowing Tommy as I do. He would do anything for a friend. I think they asked if they could store a gang box in his warehouse and him being a nice guy said yes. I hope I'm right and the truth will come out.

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