Kingpin in nation-wide narcotics ring arrested in Phoenix

Posted: Updated:
(Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office) (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
(Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office) (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)

Major drug kingpin, Nigel Maloney, was arrested Tuesday afternoon near 51st Avenue and McDowell Road in Phoenix.

Maloney, originally from New York, was wanted by the New York Police Department for  first-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance.

More than 30 drug dealing gang members, including Maloney, were charged in Kings County, New York, for selling and distributing dangerous drugs. Maloney was believed to play an important role in this drug ring, which sold 'furanyl fentanyl,' 'White China' heroin and cocaine in Brooklyn and throughout the country, including Arizona. 

[RELATED: Alleged drug dealer busted with 30,000 fake Oxy pills in car]

Several other members were arrested in a large scale investigation called "Operation Hardball." However, Maloney remained at large until Tuesday.

"The arrest of Nigel Maloney, a major drug kingpin in New York City, was the result of many long hours of surveillance and the tracking down of numerous investigative leads,” said David Gonzales, U.S. Marshal for the District of Arizona. “Public safety is more efficient when local and federal law enforcement agencies cooperate in an integrated law enforcement effort.”

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The fugitive investigation was conducted by the USMS New York/New Jersey Regional Fugitive Task Force, NYPD Brooklyn North Gang Unit, and the King's County District Attorney's Office.

Over the course of their investigation, these departments realized that Maloney was most likely in the Phoenix area. The USMS then led Arizona WANTED Violent Offender Task Force in locating and apprehending Maloney. 

Maloney is being held at the Maricopa County 4th Avenue Jail while awaiting extradition to New York.

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