Whether you refer to it by one of its street names such as snow, flake, the big flake, gold dust, sleigh ride, snow white, snow cones, or white powder, or you just call it what it is, cocaine, it is a dangerous drug that we need to get off the streets.

Yesterday in Western Massachusetts a major criminal enterprise was dealt a severe smackdown when members of local law enforcement, as well as the Drug Enforcement Agency, the FBI's Gang Task Force, ATF, and US Marshals, worked together to arrest five members of a violent drug gang that distributes cocaine and crack throughout Western Massachusetts.

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According to a media statement from the US Department of Justice, a whole slew of law enforcement personnel joined forces to bring about this major drug bust. The Springfield and Holyoke Police Departments, the Hampden County Sheriff's Office, Massachusetts State Police, members of the ATF, DEA, US Marshals Service, the FBI's Gang Task Force, and the US Attorney's Office.

Five people were arrested and charged with conspiracy to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine: Vincente Gonzalez(identified as the ringleader), 41, of Springfield; Brigham Ocasio-Rosario, 44, of Springfield; Willie Watkins, 42, of Springfield; Khristy Guzman, 37, of Holyoke; and Miguel Burgos, 45, of Holyoke.

In the media statement, US Attorney Rachael S. Rollins had this to say:

Today, thanks to the exceptional work by a multitude of dedicated law enforcement agencies, this violent criminal enterprise has been brought to its knees.

Meanwhile, Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division, had this to say:

Today’s arrests have dismantled a violent criminal enterprise headed by Vincente Gonzalez which we believe is responsible for flooding the streets of western Massachusetts with cocaine and crack cocaine while using firearms, force, and intimidation to protect their turf.

Awesome job, guys! Working together as one unified team, you should be commended. There is much more to the story. Check it out for yourself at the Department of Justice's website here.

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