Federal drug agents seized 68 pounds of cocaine, $1.6 million in cash and two guns during a raid of an alleged drug den operating out of a home just steps away from an elite private school in tony Riverdale, authorities say.
DEA agents searched the apartment as part of an investigation into the alleged multi-million dollar drug operation. The home was located right down the hill from Horace Mann and another college, and down the street from a popular public park.
Neighbor Eleni Golding was relieved as she watched DEA agents make the bust.
"That's unbelievable. It's not something -- I mean it is New York City -- you would not expect it to be here, and that's why more than likely they had it here," said Golding.
"It's a very very great, safe neighborhood," she said.
"I feel bad for the kids that walk around," said Denisha Jones, 19, who spends time at Van Cortlandt Park just down the street from the alleged drug den. Jones said the DEA agents were a welcome sight.
"Very important to the kids and the community and everything," said Jones.
Special prosecutor Bridgette Brennan says the arrest of Rojas has made an immediate impact in this neighborhood.
Federal agents believe the suspect ran the alleged stash house with tricks of the trade, including filling a 5-gallon bucket with grease to try concealing the scent of narcotics from police dogs.
The suspect is facing several charges including weapons charges, if convicted he could spend years behind bars.