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Sisters, age 65 and 70 arrested as heroin dealers


Stroud Township sisters, age 65 and 70, sold drugs, cops allege
Julio Cesar Checo, left, Elaine Volkert, middle, and Elizabeth Grube.Contributed photos
Pocono Record Writer
April 30, 2009


STROUDSBURG — Two elderly sisters arrested Tuesday don't look like drug dealers, but police charge they made about $10,000 a week selling heroin out of their Stroud Township homes for at least the past six months.

Elizabeth Grube, 70, and her sister Elaine Volkert, 65, both of Ehler Street off Route 611 in Stroud Township, are charged with distributing drugs for an Allentown dealer.

"If you saw these ladies in the grocery market you would never in your wildest imagination believe them to be accused of being major heroin dealers in the county of Monroe," said David Christine, Monroe County district attorney.

Police executed a search warrant at the women's homes April 14, according to court papers. Police report they found 1,000 bags of heroin at Volkert's home and 400 bags of heroin at Grube's home.

According to documents, the women told police that for several months they had been buying hundreds to thousands of bags of heroin at a time from an Allentown drug dealer known as "Little Tony," later identified as Julio Cesar Checo, 28, of Allentown.


Police said Checo would deliver drugs to either their homes or the Burger King parking lot on Route 611 at the Stroud Mall. Both women told police that the day before police searched their homes, Checo delivered heroin to them.

Under the supervision of police, the women then made arrangements to meet Checo for a drug deal last Thursday in Stroud Township. When he arrived, he was arrested. The two women were arrested Tuesday.

The arrests came after a weeklong investigation by police from Stroud Area Regional Police, Monroe County Drug Task Force and State Attorney General's Office — with tips from the public, Christine said.

"People see things going on in the neighborhood, they're vigilant and law-abiding and they want it to stop, so they make complaints to police," Christine said. "Police send out undercover officers, use informants to make buys and get probable cause and a search warrant is issued. In this case it is a textbook case."

The sisters have been released on their own recognizance. Checo is in Monroe County Correctional Facility and will face a preliminary hearing next week, Christine said.

Entry #410


TenajComment by Tenaj - April 30, 2009, 9:14 am
Why don't they go after the people who bring the drugs into the country and stop it at the top before it get to the drug dealers. Sure drug dealers play a big role by keeping it on the streets but when you get rid of three, five more pops up. So what's the point. It's almost like the law doesn't want it to go away.
konaneComment by konane - April 30, 2009, 9:26 am
OMG they're old enough to know better. Think one of the daytime tv judges called heroin a VAMPIRE DRUG. Removing anyone from the trade is a good idea before kids get hooked on it.
konaneComment by konane - April 30, 2009, 9:28 am
BTW they had a massive multi-jurisdictional raid in Georgia yesterday taking down many members of a drug cartel so less of everything will be on the streets.
time*treatComment by time*treat - April 30, 2009, 9:51 am
What does a drug dealer "look like"? Besides, of course, the ones that wear lab coats.

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