There is a trial going on currently in New York that is exposing the level of corruption in the NYPD when it comes to drugs. Merlin Alston, 32, an NYPD officer, was arrested in December 2014 and charged with narcotics conspiracy based on his involvement with known drug dealers in the city. According to Assistant Manhattan U.S. Attorney Jared Lenow, Alston “was serving as these drug dealers’ spy within the police department.” Alston is currently on trial for these charges in a case that has been filled with “snitches” against the disgraced cop.
Alston had his bail revoked in September when a key witness set to testify against him was found dead in an apparent gang style hit. Robert Bishun, 36, was abducted from his auto body shop and found beaten and strangled in the back of his BMW. It is alleged that Alston acted as “a helper, driver and shotgun-toting bodyguard” for multiple drug dealers.
Other dealers are expected to testify against Alston, who allegedly was part of a drug distribution ring from 2010 to 2014. Prosecutors claim that during this time period, Alston regularly tipped several dealers off to cops’ investigations and whereabouts. One drug dealer identified as Gabriel Reyes took the witness stand recently and testified that Alston would team up with him on drug runs and even gave him a Police Benevolent Association card that helped him avoid at least 30 traffic stops. Reyes and Alston have been friends since high school and he further stated, “He told me he had my back. Merlin would do what he had to do.”
Reyes was arrested in June 2015 on drug conspiracy and firearms charges and is currently seeking a plea deal with prosecutors. This fact caused Alston’s defense team to declare that Reyes and others like him “are “snitches who have everything to lose and a whole lot to gain” by testifying. They’re there for one reason and for one reason alone — to benefit their own case.”
Merlin Alston is currently on suspension from the NYPD while his criminal trial proceeds.