BURRILLVILLE – A Burrillville man was the main target of a year-long state police investigation that led to seizure of an impressive collection of guns and narcotics Wednesday morning.
Deric McGuire of 210 Central St. was one of 49 suspects arrested in the raid in what police say was the largest of its kind in state history.
Police say McGuire, who was known as “Tuna” was the president of the Pagan motorcycle club.
McGuire was one of nine from the small town arrested. Additional arrests took place in Woonsocket, North Smithfield, North Providence and Warwick as well as Charlton, Milford, Bellingham and Blackstone in Massachusetts.
The multi-state investigation dubbed “Operation Patch Out” targeted The Pagans as well as an additional biker gang known as the “Kryptmen,” whose members were allegedly involved in gun and drug trafficking, and other criminal activity.
More than 150 law enforcement officers, including members of the Rhode Island State Police, fanned out before 4 a.m. on Wednesday, May 23 for a series of coordinated, simultaneous raids of each of the locations. Items seized included 53 illegal guns, pounds of marijuana, cocaine and heroin, as well as a rocket launcher.
Additional arrests in Burrillville included Pedro Alvarez of 98 Kennedy Lane; Catherine Glaude of 210 Central St.; Nathaniel Pessini of 1 Lake Drive; and Jared Rodenbaugh of 46 Reservoir Road.
An additional raid took place at 50 Everson Drive in Chepachet.
Lt. Col. Joseph Philbin said that state police had received information about a year ago about local chapters of outlaw motorcycle gangs operating in northwestern Rhode Island, particularly Woonsocket, North Smithfield and Burrillville.
At one point, based on intelligence gathered, detectives intercepted and arrested one of the alleged gang members who was who was en route to commit a murder, according to Philbin.
Explosive devices were used to gain access to many of the locations, including what police say was a Woonsocket-based clubhouse with nine people inside. An armored truck and bartering ram was also used to break down doors.
At a press conference Wednesday afternoon, police from multiple agencies said that all arrests were made without incident. More than a dozen additional suspects are being sought on arrest warrants charging them with dozens of crimes, including gun and drug trafficking.
Attorney General Peter Kilmartin said that of those arrested, eight were getting bailed today, while 33 would be held without bail. Others already in the Adult Correction Institutions were receiving new charges.
“There’s still a lot of work to be done,” said Kilmartin. “If there’s one takeaway from this: guns and drugs still go together. Crime will continue, but we will be there to stomp it out.”