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N. Cape May Man, Woman Face Additional Drug Charges

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CMC Pros Logo

By Christopher South

COURT HOUSE – A pair of Lower Township residents, who were found, Jan. 3, passed out in a car in the Wawa parking lot on Rio Grande Avenue, in Wildwood, were more recently named in a larger drug investigation in Lower Township.

Cape May County Prosecutor Jeffrey H. Sutherland, along with Cape May County Sheriff Robert A. Nolan and Lower Township Police Chief Kevin Lewis, announced the arrest of Kenneth Lopez-Atiles, 29, and Christine Pagan, 35, of the 3000 block of Bayshore Road, in North Cape May, for the distribution of controlled dangerous substances.

Lopez-Atiles and Pagan, identified by Wildwood police as Christine Pagan-Perez, were both incarcerated in the Cape May County Correctional Facility after their Jan. 3 arrest. Wildwood police searched the couple’s vehicle and found over 600 bags of suspected heroin/cocaine and over $2,000 in cash.

The Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office Gangs, Guns, and Narcotics Task Force concluded a cooperative narcotics investigation Jan. 12 into the distribution of heroin by Lopez-Atiles and Pagan.

On the same date, the prosecutor’s task force, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Cape May County Sheriff’s Department K-9 Unit and the Lower Township Police Department executed court authorized search warrants on Lopez-Atiles and Pagan’s residence, vehicles, and storage unit.

As a result of these search warrants, law enforcement seized over 2,650 bags of suspected heroin with a street value of approximately $30,000.

Both Lopez-Atiles and Pagan were charged with possession of heroin, a crime of the third degree, as well as possession with intent to distribute heroin and conspiracy, both second-degree crimes.

Lopez-Atiles and Pagan are currently lodged in the Atlantic County Correctional Facility for unrelated charges. They were incarcerated in Atlantic County when the current charges were filed. 

Sutherland said his office will continue to work hand-in-hand with federal and state partners, along with the local municipalities, to target anyone selling illegal, controlled dangerous substances.

Sutherland also continues to urge the citizens of Cape May County to report illegal drug activity or any criminal activity within the community.

Information can be reported to the Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office at 609-465-1135, or anonymously on the Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office website at cmcpo.tips; through the Cape May County Sheriff’s Tip Line at cmcsheriff.net and click on anonymous tip; or to the Cape May County Crime Stoppers at 609-889-3597.

Individuals convicted of second-degree crimes are subject to a term of imprisonment of five to 10 years in New Jersey State Prison. Any charges are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

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