Father, son busted for trafficking ecstasy in Detroit; impersonated Tim Allen, Tracy Morgan
Officials: Drug traffickers impersonate celebrities in 'massive pill factory'
DETROIT – A father and son are behind bars after Customs and Homeland Security officials busted their ecstasy operation out of a building on Detroit's west side. Officials said the men were using the names of comedians Tim Allen and Tracy Morgan as aliases.
The Local 4 Defenders obtained secret photos taken by federal officials that show Sylvester Boston Sr. and his son, Sylvester Boston Jr. On paper, the pair ran S&B Computer Repairs on Detroit's west side, but in reality, the only chips coming out of the computer shop were potato chip bags filled with illegal party pills known as BZP, or ecstasy.
"This is really something," Local 4 legal expert Neil Rockind said. "You look at the level of sophistication and attention to detail that, in a way, almost could have been written in a Hollywood script."
Police said when the Bostons opened phone lines and ordered drugs and paraphernalia in famous comedians' names, it drew the attention of a customs agent who noticed a package full of white powder addressed to Allen, a Michigan native and Hollywood star.
When officials inspected the package and found BZP, a full-scale investigation was opened, and they discovered Morgan, best known for his roles in "Saturday Night Live" and "30 Rock," was also being used as an alias. Multiple shipments were made in his name.
"I suspect that the use of Tim Allen and Tracy Morgan was not an accident," Rockind said. "Either one or both are fans of Tim Allen. Tim Allen is from Detroit."
An expensive pill press was ordered from China, and Morgan's name was signed on the receipt, officials said. The pills had memorable designs such as airplanes and McDonald's arches. Customers loved the operation, and federal officials called it a "massive pill factory."
"This is the kind of stuff you read about in books and think it doesn't happen in real life, but it is happening right here in Metro Detroit," Rockind said.
Federal officials put hidden cameras on telephone poles. Agents said they used wire taps to listen in as the Bostons placed orders using the comedians' names.
Officials said it was obviously not the real Tim Allen or Tracy Morgan running the drug operation.
The computer store was raided, and multiple weapons, a bulletproof vest, drugs and the pill press were confiscated, police said.
Federal officials said Sylvester Boston Jr. was the mastermind of the operation. He was sentenced to nine years in federal prison. His father was an accomplice and received eight years behind bars, police said.
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