A Bay Shore man charged with selling cocaine out of a Ronkonkoma pizza shop where he works had nearly $170,000 worth of cash and drugs in his home when police arrested him, Suffolk County police said Wednesday.
Placido Buscemi, 54, was taken into custody Tuesday night at his home on Cedar Drive after officers executed a search warrant and found $115,741 in cash, 750 grams of cocaine with a street value of $45,000, 200 oxycodone pills valued at $9,000, and a half-pound of marijuana, said Suffolk Police Commissioner Timothy Sini.
Police also found a loaded AR-15 rifle and a loaded .12 gauge Winchester shotgun, “which was at the ready, next to the bed,” Sini said. Officers also recovered two safes, three digital scales, three cellphones, packaging bags and materials, and a money-counting machine.
Both Buscemi and his stepson Noumda Acosta, 33, are facing drug and weapons possession charges, police said.
Police could not immediately say whether the men had prior criminal records.
Buscemi, an employee of the Mama Mia Pizzeria on Johnson Avenue, sold drugs from the rear parking lot of the business, Sini said. The commissioner would not say how long Buscemi had been dealing drugs from the business, but said police have evidence he sold cocaine there four times.
“He was selling it when he was working,” Sini said. “I can’t go into details on how we obtained that evidence at this point.”
An employee who answered the phone at the restaurant Wednesday afternoon said the owner was not available, but had “no knowledge” of the alleged drug-dealing.
The employee, who did not give a name, said Buscemi was a manager, but declined to comment further.
Sini called the arrest the “result of great work by our detectives. . . . If you’re selling drugs in Suffolk County we’re coming for you.”