Philadelphia man charged as heroin dealer in Mercer County

A month-long investigation into narcotics distribution in Mercer County has culminated with the arrest of a Philadelphia man and the seizure of $40,000 in heroin.

On Monday, October 16, 2023, members of the federal Drug Enforcement Administration, Mercer County Narcotics Task Force, and the Ewing, Hamilton and Trenton police, initiated surveillance in the parking lot of the River’s Edge Apartments on Country Lane in Ewing Township based on information received during the investigation.  

At about 8:30 p.m., officers observed the target of the investigation, Onasis Santos-Estevez, arrive in a red Mitsubishi Outlander.  

The driver and Santos-Estevez were detained without incident.  

Sgt. Tom Paglione utilized his K-9 partner, Indy, to conduct an exterior sniff of the vehicle, which resulted in Indy alerting to the scent of narcotics on the rear passenger side door.  

A search warrant was executed and, inside of the Outlander, detectives located a blue reusable shopping bag containing approximately 200 bricks of heroin under the front passenger seat.

Santos-Estevez, 47, of Philadephia, PA, was charged with possession of a controlled dangerous substance and possession with the intent to distribute.  

Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri’s office has filed a motion to detain Santos-Estevez pending trial.

According to Onofri, the street value of the confiscated heroin is approximately $40,000.

Despite having been charged, all persons are presumed innocent until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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