- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 5, 2016

BARNSTABLE, Mass. (AP) - A brother and sister and another man have been charged with murder and about a dozen other people are facing drug and gun counts after a series of Tuesday morning raids on Cape Cod that state and federal prosecutors said broke up one of the region’s largest drug gangs.

Denzel Chisholm and his sister, Shannelle Chisholm, are charged with murder in connection with the stabbing and shooting death of Christine Ferreira, whose body was found in September at a Route 6 rest area. Tyrone Gomes, who already was in custody, also is charged with murder.

Denzel Chisholm, suspected of being a leader of the Nauti Street gang, was among 13 people charged with heroin distribution or firearms offenses, U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz said at a news conference with Cape and Islands District Attorney Michael O’Keefe, Barnstable police Chief Paul MacDonald and other officials.

Investigators think Ferreira, of Barnstable, was killed in retaliation for her court testimony against another gang member.

“This gang was intent on terrifying or eliminating anyone who posed a threat to their criminal activities,” said Daniel Kumor, agent in charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Boston office.

The Chisholms were arraigned Tuesday afternoon on the murder charges and were ordered held without bail. Denzel Chisholm’s attorney didn’t immediately return a message seeking comment. It couldn’t immediately be determined whether Shannelle Chisholm had a lawyer. They’re due back in court April 27. Gomes couldn’t be reached for comment in jail, and his arraignment date has not been determined.

The gun and drug charges are federal charges, so most of those defendants will appear Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Boston.

The gang bought heroin in New Bedford and then moved it back to the Cape for distribution, Ortiz said.

The investigation was launched because Cape Cod and adjacent Bristol County have the highest opioid overdose rates in the state, she said.

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This story has been corrected to show that 13 people, not 11, are facing federal gun and drug charges.


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