New Bedford police arrest three in drug bust

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NEW BEDFORD — Three individuals were arrested following a surveillance operation by narcotics detectives on June 3, according to the New Bedford Police Department.

During an investigation in the north-end sector of the city, Sgt. Jonathan Lagoa observed a drug deal at approximately 5:30 p.m. at the intersection of N. Front Street and Phillips Avenue.

Two women, later identified as Gail Farland, 60, and Cheryl Ann Butler, 55, were detained and found in possession of crack cocaine.

The male suspect, Eliezer Rivera, 29, of 1107 County Street, was stopped on Coffin Avenue near Riverside Park.

A subsequent search of Rivera and his vehicle revealed about 16 grams of crack cocaine, a digital scale, baggies, and a Bulldog .44 caliber revolver loaded with five rounds.

Rivera, who is not licensed to carry firearms, was taken into custody.

Farland and Butler were charged with possession of crack cocaine and conspiracy to violate controlled substance laws.

Rivera faces charges including distribution of crack cocaine, possession with intent to distribute, and illegal carrying of a loaded firearm without a license, among others.

Det. Emily Pacheco was credited with the arrests.

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