JP gang targeted in massive drug bust; two locals arrested

July 9, 2012
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EGLESTON/HYDE SQ.—Jamaica Plain’s notorious Boylston Street gang, known for a murderous feud with a Mozart Street gang, was targeted by a massive drug raid this morning that has landed two JP residents behind bars.

None of the 15 people charged so far actually live on Boylston Street. The gang was allegedly trafficking Mexican cocaine in a racket headed by former Hyde Park resident Juan “White Boy” Guzman, 33, despite the fact he is in prison on charges related to a 2009 JP shooting. The two JP residents charged in the raid, including Guzman’s sister, live in Parkside.

Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley, announcing the raid known as “Operation Rodeo” today, said the Boylston Street organization is a “street gang that grew into a massive, homegrown criminal syndicate” and a “violent, multi-million-dollar drug trafficking enterprise.” The FBI, Boston Police, the DA’s Office and the state Department of Corrections all were involved in the 13-month investigation and raid, which Conley called the largest Boston drug bust he could recall in his 10 years in office.

The street war between the Boylston and Mozart gangs has resulted in scores of violent crimes, including homicide, in JP over the years. That includes the shocking 2010 triple killing at the Same Old Place restaurant in central JP, where gang members engaged in a gun and knife battle.

The JP residents charged are Maria Guzman, 28, and Tomas “Alex” Lugo Jr., 25, who live at different addresses on Forest Hills Street. Maria Guzman is a secretary at Dorchester Juvenile Court and allegedly maintained bank accounts and a safe deposit box containing drug money, according to the DA’s Office. Lugo allegedly acted as a drug distributor. Both face charges of drug trafficking.

Authorities have seized cocaine, more than $400,000 in cash and bank accounts, and four vehicles from the various defendants, with the investigation continuing, according to the DA’s Office.

Juan Guzman was imprisoned last year with a two-and-a-half-year sentence on drug and gun charges, according to the DA’s Office. Guzman, along with two other men, were arrested on April 28, 2009 in West Roxbury in an SUV containing crack cocaine and a handgun, as the Gazette reported at the time. Police had stopped the SUV because it matched the description of a vehicle seen fleeing the scene of a double shooting in front of a Hyde Square pizza shop earlier that night, which wounded two men, one of them a JP resident. Guzman was not charged in the actual shooting.

The homes of the other defendants were in the cities of Canton and Milton, as well as in the Boston neighborhoods of Dorchester, East Boston, Hyde Park, Roslindale, Roxbury and South Boston. Despite the far-flung addresses, Conley said in a press statement that authorities “believe many of these individuals are active, driving members of the Boylston street gang, which has been engaged in a deadly feud with its Mozart rivals for almost five years now.”

Updated version: This story has been updated to include information on Guzman’s 2009 arrest and to correct the subneighborhood where the local defendants reside.