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The New York Times January 31, 1945
This City Is Focal Point, Says Treasury, Reporting Also More Heroin and Less Opium
Special to The New York Times

WASHINGTON, Jan. 30-- An increase in the traffic in marijuana, reappearance of heroin in moderate quantities and a decline in opium seizures during 1944 were reported today by the Treasury Department.

Agents of the department found evidence indicating that New York City was the focal point of the traffic in marijuana and four major gangs supplying the city were broken up, according to Elmer L. Irey, coordinator of enforcement. He reported that the traffic in some instances reached "the proportion of well­financed national and international conspirators."

The department disclosed that one of the New York gangs which came under investigation was the "107th Street Mob," formerly headed by "Lucky" Luciano. The investigation resulted in the indictment of seventeen persons in New York.

The Treasury agents discovered that the major source of supply of the gang was Mexican opium and heroin and that the New Yorkers were dealing with members of the old Black Toni Parmagini gang in California, and investigations were extended to the West Coast. A number of smugglers, including Willie Levin, former partner of Parmagini and just released from a seventeen­year prison sentence were captured.

Large quantities of marijuana were seized in the raids in New York, according to the Treasury's report. Other joint narcotic­customs investigations resulted in the breaking up of large drug­smuggling gangs operating through Phoenix and Nogales, Ariz., and one channeling dope from El Paso, Tex., to New Jersey.

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