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State Police: Pair distributed 'thousands of bags of heroin'

From left, Jeffrey Iarocci, 39, and Michael Wehle,

From left, Jeffrey Iarocci, 39, and Michael Wehle, 42, of Selden, were arrested Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014, charged with distributing what State Police said are believed to be "thousands of bags of heroin" on a monthly basis in Suffolk County. They were each charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, criminal sale of a controlled substance, loitering, criminal possession of drug paraphernalia, endangering the welfare of a child and unlawful possession of marijuana, police said.

Two Selden men who sold "thousands of bags of heroin" a month were arraigned on drug charges Wednesday after neighborhood complaints prompted a monthlong investigation, State Police said.

Jeffrey Iarocci, 39, and Michael Wehle, 42, both of 4 Pontiac Rd., delivered heroin at prearranged locations or sold it from their home, said Pete McArdle, senior investigator in the narcotics enforcement unit of the State Police Troop L in Farmingdale.

Based on information, including from heroin users, the pair sold about 200 bags of heroin a day at $10 per bag, each containing about .03 grams of the drug, enough for one injection, he said.

"They were dealing every day," McArdle said.

After residents complained about the drug traffic drawn to the neighborhood, State Police mounted an investigation that included surveillance and arrested the two men at 6 a.m. Tuesday, McArdle said. Armed with a search warrant, investigators discovered 100 baggies of heroin, ready for sale, he said.

The two were arraigned on charges of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, third-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance, seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, first-degree loitering, second-degree criminal possession of drug paraphernalia, endangering the welfare of a child and unlawful possession of marijuana.

Bail for each was set at $50,000 cash or $250,000 bond.

Iarocci's attorney, Jonathan Manley of Hauppauge, said his client is not a dealer but a heroin user whose house mate sells drugs.

"His family fully supports him as he battles an addiction to heroin," Manley said.

Wehle was represented by Legal Aid, which does not comment on cases.

McArdle said both were heroin users, which is not uncommon among heroin drug dealers, and said it was no longer unusual to have dealers deliver drugs instead of customers going to them. They'd meet users at parking lots, side streets and other locations, and, sometimes all it took was 10 seconds to make a deal, the investigator said.

Police said investigators conducted surveillances on the home, observing what they called "a high volume of drug activity" -- with customers driving to the residence and making buys inside the home or, sometimes, in the driveway.

Police said the investigation revealed a 3-year-old and the child's mother were living "temporarily" at the residence, leading to the endangerment charge against Wehle and Iarocci.

No charges were brought against the woman.

The men got their heroin supply from New York City and the investigation is ongoing, police said. Three users, whose names were not released, also were arrested, police said.

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