NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WKBW) — On December 14, 2018, the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force, in coordination with local police agencies, raided the Packard Court apartments in Niagara Falls and arrested Jeffrey Richards.
Richards, 28, is now facing federal charges in connection with drug trafficking, unlawful possession of ten (10) guns and making an "improvised explosive device"
7 Eyewitness News obtained a copy of the federal criminal complaint that details the charges.
The complaint alleges that Richards stored a significant amount of illegal narcotics, including heroin and fetanyl, in his Packard Court apartment.
Investigators believe those were destined for distribution in the Niagara Falls area.
Officers also recovered a bomb and other materials to make bombs in the apartment, including explosives "in the shape of a ball with nails inside, wrapped in muffler tape, and have a green fuse on top."
The court document claims Richards admitted to buying fireworks and other commercial explosive devices to "subsequently improve the concussion and explosions of these devices."
Police believe Richards is a self-described white supremacist.
SEVERAL RAIDING OFFICERS BECOME ILL
Following the drug raid, twenty-two (22) law enforcement officials became very sick with flu-like symptoms, said Niagara County Sheriff James Voutour.
Only those who entered Richards' apartment, or had contact with the suspect, seemed to be affected.
Sheriff Voutour ordered an investigation and sent hazmat crews back to the suspect's apartment to get samples.
Now a couple weeks later, 7 Eyewitness News Reporter Ed Reilly checked with Sheriff Voutour to see what the testing found.
According to the Sheriff, local chemical and biological testing came back "negative."
However, Voutour said some of the samples were sent to the FBI lab in Quantico, Virginia for further analysis.
Those results have not been returned yet, said the sheriff.
Jeffrey Richards is being held without bail in the Niagara County Jail.