MANHATTAN (PIX11) -- James Hunt the Special Agent-in-Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration in New York, usually does interviews in his Manhattan office. But he offered to take PIX11 an aerial tour of the “heroin highways” that traffic the insidious drug into the five boroughs and beyond.
“New York is the heroin hub,” Hunt explained to PIX11 News, as we flew over the George Washington Bridge recently in the DEA’s Eurostar helicopter, which is worth about $2 million dollars.
“Route 80 and Route 95 both merge at the G-W,” Hunt said. “95 brings traffic from the south, and 80 brings it from the west.”
Kilos or ready-made doses processed in “heroin mills” can then continue north to Connecticut and Massachusetts or out to Long Island, which has been fighting a heroin plague for at least six years.
Most heroin mills are located in the Bronx or upper Manhattan, in apartments that are very close to entrance ramps of major highways.
The DEA has a high-tech camera affixed to its chopper—worth nearly a million dollars—that can read license plates off tractor trailers or cars that the federal drug agents may be tracking into New York.
In Part 3 of Mary Murphy’s special series, “Heroin: A to Z,” Mary explains how one kilo can translate into 30,000 bags of deadly heroin, available to young addicts for as little as $5 a hit.
Mary reports from the skies—and on the streets—and shows a corner home in residential Rosedale, Queens that served as the business address for a trucking company operator recently busted for moving a tractor trailer with heroin from Riverside, California to Hauppauge, Long Island.
Digital producer: Jeremy Tanner