Mercer County Prosecutor Joseph L. Bocchini Jr. and Lawrence Township Police Chief Daniel A. Posluszny announced that the Mercer County Special Investigations Unit have concluded a three-month investigation with a raid of a family-owned pizzeria.
The investigation was a result of multiple complaints about drugs being sold out of Nino’s Trattoria & Pizzeria on Lawrence Road, Bocchini said.
On Friday, Sept. 13, just after 10 a.m., officers with the prosecutor’s office, the county sheriff’s office, and the Ewing, Hamilton, Lawrence and Trenton police departments executed search warrants at the pizzeria and two homes in Hamilton Township.
One of the proprietors of the pizzeria, Angelo Esposito, was found inside the pizzeria. A search of the office revealed approximately 11 grams of powder cocaine, packaged for distribution, and a fully-loaded, defaced Taurus 9mm semi-automatic handgun, according to Bocchini. A duffel bag containing $978 was located in the kitchen. Esposito’s 1998 Chevrolet Tahoe was seized as drug proceeds.
Angelo Esposito, 49, is charged with possession of cocaine, possession with the intent to distribute, possession of a firearm while committing a narcotics offense, possession of a defaced firearm and possession of drug paraphernalia. He is free on $75,000 bail.
At Angelo Esposito’s home on Nalbone Court in Hamilton, officers found approximately two grams of powder cocaine in a bathroom drawer, two shotguns and a rifle, a small quantity of marijuana, a digital scale and packaging material, and cash totaling $7,807 in various locations.
Esposito’s wife, Pamela Nalbone-Esposito, was placed under arrest.
Nalbone-Esposito, 43, was charged with possession of cocaine and possession of marijuana. She was released on a summons pending court proceedings.
A search warrant was also executed at the Cranbrook Road residence of Esposito’s brother, David Esposito. In the garage, officers located a black pouch containing approximately 17 grams of powder cocaine packaged for distribution, a digital scale and packaging material, according to Bocchini. Throughout one of the rear bedrooms, $11,975 was found.
A search of David Esposito’s 2001 BMW revealed three bags of powder cocaine, according to Bocchini The vehicle was seized as drug proceeds along with Esposito’s Hummer H2. David Esposito was arrested and taken to the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office.