Narcotics investigation yields seizure of large quantities of methamphetamine, GHB

An Elizabeth man is facing multiple serious drug charges following the seizure of sizeable quantities of methamphetamine and gamma-Hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) from his home, acting Union County Prosecutor Lyndsay V. Ruotolo announced Wednesday.  Christopher Durkin, 56, has been arrested and charged with first-degree possession of a controlled dangerous substance with the intent to distribute, a related second-degree narcotics offense, and two related third-degree narcotics offenses.

The arrest is the result of an investigation led by Detective Dylan Cosgrove of the Prosecutor’s Office’s Intelligence-Driven Prosecutions Unit.  The investigation, which was conducted over the course of approximately one month, ultimately led to the issuance of a search warrant for Durkin’s home, an apartment located on the 500 block of Spring Street in Elizabeth.

Members of the Prosecutor’s Office’s Major Crimes Division, assisted by the Elizabeth Police Department Narcotics Unit, executed the warrant last Thursday, February 20, recovering approximately 175 grams of methamphetamine, two bottles of GHB, drug paraphernalia commonly used for the packaging of both drugs, and about $170 in cash, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Meghan Tomlinson, who is prosecuting the case.  GHB is a powerful depressant commonly used either recreationally or as a so-called “date rape” drug.

Methamphetamine use appears to be generally trending upward in New Jersey, accordingly to a recent study conducted by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration’s Intelligence Program, in conjunction with the NY/NJ High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area program and the NJ State Police Regional Operations Intelligence Center’s Drug Monitoring Initiative.  Prosecutor Ruotolo created the Intelligence-Driven Prosecutions Unit last year to bring modern intelligence techniques to the forefront of policing.  Ruotolo noted that “by being able to position themselves ahead of this trend, our new unit has again demonstrated the effectiveness of the intelligence-driven model.”

Convictions on criminal charges of this nature are commonly punishable by terms of up to 20 years in prison.   

These criminal charges are mere accusations. Every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.