Public Notices and Press Releases

CA Man Faces Federal Charges for Fentanyl Distribution in New Jersey

Authorities Seize 5 Kilograms of Fentanyl; Suspect Detained Following Traffic Violation in Bergen County

In a significant drug enforcement operation, Timothy Alan Blank, a 54-year-old man from California, has been charged with possession with intent to distribute fentanyl, as announced by U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger. The charges come after law enforcement officials intercepted approximately 5 kilograms of the potent synthetic opioid in Blank's vehicle during a traffic stop in Bergen County, New Jersey.

According to court documents and official statements, on March 3, 2024, Blank traveled from Los Angeles, California, to New Jersey, transporting the narcotics in an SUV. The arrest followed on March 8, 2024, when New Jersey state law enforcement officers observed a motor vehicle violation committed by Blank. A subsequent inspection of the vehicle led to the discovery of the fentanyl stash within the SUV's trunk.

Blank was presented before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael A. Hammer in Newark federal court, where he was detained pending further proceedings. The charge against him carries severe penalties, including a maximum of 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $1 million.

The operation leading to Blank's arrest involved collaboration among various law enforcement agencies, including Homeland Security Investigations Newark, under Acting Special Agent in Charge Michael Alfonso; the Bergen County Sheriff’s Office; the Fort Lee Police Department; and U.S. Customs and Border Protection Air and Marine Operations. Assistant U.S. Attorney Vincent D. Romano of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Narcotics/Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force Unit in Newark is representing the government in the prosecution of the case.

This arrest underscores the ongoing efforts by federal and local law enforcement agencies to combat the distribution of fentanyl, a drug that has contributed significantly to the opioid crisis in the United States. The charge and allegations against Blank are currently accusations, and he is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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