Man Sentenced to Prison for Role in Multi-County Cocaine Distribution Network

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Michael T. Swanson

MORRIS COUNTY — Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp and Acting Chief of Investigations Chris Kimker announce the sentencing of Michael T. Swanson, 42, Hackensack. On May 21, Swanson entered guilty pleas to second degree Distribution of Cocaine and Second degree Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Dangerous Substances. As part of the plea agreement, Swanson forfeited $5200 in United States currency.

On Tuesday, June 25, the Honorable Stephen J. Taylor, P.J.Cr., sentenced Swanson to twelve years in New Jersey State Prison and required Swanson to serve fifty-three months before being eligible for parole. This extended term of confinement is a first-degree sentencing recommendation because the defendant, in 2011, was convicted in Passaic County, of first degree distribution of controlled dangerous substances.  Judge Taylor also imposed a concurrent eight year state prison term on the Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Dangerous Substances count.  Mr. Swanson is the lead defendant in a case that resulted in the arrest 17 individuals and the seizure of four vehicles that Swanson and his associates used as part of the drug distribution network.

Between January 2017 and December 2018, members of the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Special Enforcement Unit/Narcotics Task Force and detectives with the Parsippany-Troy Hills Police Department, received information that Michael Swanson and multiple associates were importing and distributing cocaine in Morris and surrounding counties. There were also numerous members from multiple law enforcement agencies who assisted with this investigation.

Prosecutor Knapp stated “The diligent and hardworking law enforcement professionals from the Morris County Narcotics Task Force and all of our partners led to the successful prosecution of a large-scale drug distributor. Michael Swanson’s cocaine distribution network spanned multiple counties in New Jersey and provided a significant amount of illicit narcotics to the streets. We greatly appreciate the efforts of all law enforcement agencies who participated in this case. The Morris County Prosecutor’s Office will continue to tirelessly investigate and prosecute for-profit narcotics dealers in our county.”

The Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Special Operations Division led the investigation, with assistance from the Morris County Sheriff’s Office K9 Unit, Sussex County Prosecutor’s Office, Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office, Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office/Bergen County SWAT, Parsippany-Troy Hills Police Department, Town of Boonton Police Department, Boonton Township Police Department, New Jersey State Police, Morristown Bureau of Police, Dover Police Department, Morris County Park Police, Butler Police Department, Lincoln Park Borough Police Department, Rockaway Borough Police Department, Kinnelon Borough Police Department, Jefferson Township Police Department, Hanover Township Police Department, Denville Township Police Department, Hackensack Police Department, and Woodland Park Police Department. Task Force Officer George Tsimpedes of the Morris County Narcotics Task Force was the lead investigator. Assistant Prosecutor Erin Callahan represented the State at sentencing.