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Pot crew busted, authorities say

Photo Credit: Cliffview Pilot

Nearly a pound of pot turned into the arrests of five people on drug-related charges following a series of undercover buys, authorities said.


The operation began Oct. 15, when a detective from the Bergen County Narcotic Task Force bought an ounce of marijuana at a Paramus mall from Johnny Jimenez, 24, of Totowa, said Prosecutor John L. Molinelli.

Two weeks later, Jiminez sold another ounce, the prosecutor said. That led to yesterday’s roundup in Paramus.


Shortly after 4 p.m., the undercover bought two more ounces of pot from both Jiminez and Carlos Flames, 21, of Hudson Avenue and 60th Street in West New York, Molinelli said.

Flames, a maintenance worker at a Union City spa, was carrying an additional four ounces and Jiminez two more when detectives moved in and arrested both, he said.

Three other people who were with the men were snagged, as well:

Cristina Rodriguez, 19, of Stuart Lane in Wayne, who works at the trendy Justice Clothing Store in the Paramus Park mall;

Nelson De La Hoz, 23, of Lexington Avenue in Paterson;

Michelle Daza, 21, of Columbia Avenue in North Bergen.

Both De La Hoz and Daza, as well as Jiminez, are unemployed, the prosecutor said.

Flames and Jiminez are being held on $50,000 cash bail each in the Bergen County Jail. The other three were released pending court dates.

Molinelli credited task force members, as well as officers with the Paramus Police Department, headed by Chief Richard Cary.

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