Drug Investigation - Heroin Trafficking
Raul Lacosta-Franco (38 years of age)
126 West Elm Street
Reading, PA 19601
- Possession with Intent to Deliver a Controlled Substance - heroin/fentanyl
- Possession of a Controlled Substance - heroin/fentanyl
- Persons Not to Possess Firearms
- Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
DETAILS OF INCIDENT:
In November of 2019, the Berks County Drug Task Force initiated a drug investigation relative to suspect, Raul Lacosta-Franco, being involved in drug activity and known to carry weapons. Sources revealed that Lacosta-Franco was dealing heroin and fentanyl within the City of Reading, Pennsylvania.
During the investigation, Berks County Drug Task Force Detectives learned that Raul Lacosta-Franco of West Elm Street, Reading, was responsible for trafficking heroin to others within Berks County, Pennsylvania. Lacosta-Franco’s customers would contact him via cellular telephones and drug deals were made from 126 West Elm Street, Reading, Berks County, PA.
Within the course of the investigation, during the months of December 2019 and January 2020, the suspect, Lacosta-Franco sold significant quantities of heroin to individuals.
Based on information received and investigation conducted, on January 29, 2020, the Berks County Detectives obtained search warrants for the residences of 126 West Elm Street, Reading, Berks County, Pennsylvania. The search warrant was issued by Magisterial District Judge Stuart Kennedy.
On January 30, 2020, at approximately 6:01 AM, the Berks County Drug Task Detectives served the search warrant on the suspect, Raul Lacosta-Franco, 126 West Elm, Reading, PA. At the time of the execution of the search warrant Raul Lacosta-Franco was found and placed under arrest.
As a result of the searches, the following items were found and seized:
1. Two plastic bag containing bulk quantity of heroin/fentanyl mixture
2. One plastic bag containing fentanyl
3. Numerous firearms including:
- Double Star 5.56 mm AR-15
- Aero Precision 5.56 mm AR-15
- Anderson 7.62 x 39 mm AR-15
- Taurus 9mm handgun
- Taurus .357 handgun
4. Numerous firearm magazines including drum magazines with a capacity of 50 & 100 rounds
5. A large volume of ammunition (over 1000 rounds) of numerous calibers including .223, 9mm, .40 cal. .357 magnum, 7.62x39mm
6. Four (4) sears for Glock handgun capable of making Glock firearms fully automatic
7. Drug paraphernalia including:
- processing equipment pertaining to heroin/fentanyl
- packaging material for heroin/fentanyl
- digital scale
8. $13,377.00 in United States Currency believed to be proceeds from sales
The total street value of all the drugs recovered in excess of $32,500.00.
On January 30, 2020, the suspect, Raul Lacosta-Franco was transported to the Berks County Sheriff’s Department Central Processing Center for processing and arraignment. Bail was set at $250,000 and he was transported to Berks County Jail.
This investigation was a joint investigation with the following member police departments of the Berks County Drug Task Force Department: the Berks County District Attorney Narcotics Unit, the Pennsylvania State Police, the Reading Police Department and the West Reading Police Department.
As in every criminal case, the fact that an arrest occurred or a complaint has been filed is merely an accusation, and the defendant Raul Lacosta-Franco is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.