Sunday, June 18, 2017

Extended Stay America Drug Lab Busted

At approximately 2PM on Wednesday, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) made a drug arrest at the Extended Stay America hotel on Rt 119 in Elmsford. Working with Elmsford police and fire personnel, the area was cordoned off and arrests were made of Charles Thelusma, 43. The former resident of Bridgeport, Connecticut, who has previous drug convictions, faces charges that he possessed and sold heroin, carfentanil and U47700.

In addition to Elmsford fire and police involvement, Westchester County’s Special Operations’ Hazardous Material Response Team provided support and decontamination to the NYS police’s Contaminated Crime Scene Emergency Response personnel who gathered samples and removed assorted chemicals and drugs. The fire department members as well as the county Haz-Mat personnel are highly-skilled volunteer responders.

Officials said carfentanil is an opioid typically used as a tranquilizer for elephants and other large mammals, and is 10,000 times more potent than morphine and 100 times stronger than fentanyl, a deadly drug that is 50 times more powerful than heroin. U47700 is a synthetic opioid that is about seven times stronger than morphine, officials said.

“This is the first federal prosecution involving carfentanil in Connecticut,” said Deirdre Daly, U.S. Attorney in Connecticut, who added that the investigation is ongoing. Authorities said they set up heroin purchases on two occasions in March and May, when Thelusma is accused of having one of his workers handle those drug sales in Bridgeport. On May 24, officials said, authorities arranged the purchase of three bundles of heroin, or 30 dose bags, from Thelusma for $200 at the Elmsford hotel.

Thelusma has spent time behind bars in Connecticut in recent years for drug convictions, court records show. In 2011, he was sentenced to 731 days in jail for selling drugs in Stamford, and in 2007 he was sentenced to 15 months in jail for drug dealing in Norwalk, according to court records.

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