An almost year-long investigation involving nine states culminated with the arrests of 10 people in what police called “Operation Spice King”. The suspects were arrested in Pinellas County.
Police claimed that the suspects were manufacturing the synthetic marijuana in multiple locations throughout Pinellas County. The men were also accused of selling the product in various convenience stores in St. Petersburg.
The investigation began in June 2013 when police received a tip that one of the men was distributing synthetic marijuana around Tampa Bay and the United States.
An undercover operation began and drugs were bought. The purchased synthetic marijuana contained a substance that was banned in Florida. Other packages were soon seized and they too contained the banned substance.
Eventually detectives found all the remaining suspects, all of whom they said were working under two men. Those suspects were involved in the manufacture and distribution of the synthetic drugs in two public storage facilities and two private residences, per the police report.
Between 2011 and 2014 police state the suspects shipped almost 1000 units of the synthetic marijuana throughout the country.
The following suspects were arrested in Pinellas County:
Pyarali Shamsuddin Heerani, 48, of Tampa Charged with conspiracy to distribute synthetic cannabinoids
Shamir Sultanali Nathani, 32, of Holiday Charged with two counts of conspiracy to distribute synthetic cannabinoids and violation of RICO
Dadhichi Naik, 37, of Largo Charged with conspiracy to commit racketeering
Hasnain Brohi, 26, of Houston Charged with conspiracy to distribute synthetic cannabinoids
Farkunda Akhtar, 21, of Houston Charged with of possession of synthetic cannabinoids with intent to sell
Hurara Hassan, 33, of Houston Charged with possession of controlled substance with intent to sell/manufacture/distribute
Akber Ghazanfer, 33, of Houston Charged with possession of marijuana and possession of controlled substance with intent to sell
Sheraz Khowaja, 26, of Houston Charged with possession of controlled substance with intent to sell
Trudy Nathani, 46, of Holiday Charged with own/operating a residence for manufacturing narcotics
Joanel Volcin, 35, of St. Petersburg
Charged with possession of controlled substance
Pyarali Heerani bonded out of Pinellas County Jail but then picked up new RICO charges which means he is considered a fugitive at this time.
The Office of Statewide Prosecution, the DEA and the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office all contributed in this joint investigation.
Have you or a loved one been arrested for a possession of marijuana or a sale of controlled substance charge? Then call the St. Petersburg drug defense lawyers at Blake & Dorsten, P.A. today! These former prosecutors are experienced trial attorneys.
The lawyers of Blake & Dorsten, P.A. handles all criminal and auto accident cases throughout the Gulf Coast of Florida including St. Petersburg, Tampa Bay, Clearwater, St. Pete Beach, Largo, Pinellas Park, Seminole, Gulfport, Palm Harbor and Kenneth City.