State Attorney General announces arrest of former “Operation Smackdown” grand juror

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ALBANY — The office of State Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced the arrest of a former grand juror in Operation Smackdown on Wednesday.

Jannis Danes, 54, Minoa, was arraigned Wednesday morning in Minoa Village Court and charged with unlawful grand jury disclosure. If convicted, she faces up to 1 1/3 to 4 years in state prison for the class E felony.

In April and May 2016, Ms. Danes allegedly “told Julie Long, in the presence of Jeff Meyers, that Julie Long, Mark Spratt and other mutual acquaintances were suspects” in the grand jury investigation, and gave him specific details about evidence, Mr. Schneiderman said in a press release.

Mr. Meyers repeated the information to Tina Day, who told another suspect, Lori Raum, about the investigation. Ms. Long fled to South Carolina after learning she would be indicted.

Operation Smackdown was a joint attorney general-state police investigation that resulted in the indictments of 72 people allegedly operating drug rings in New York City, Syracuse and Oswego County.

The larger ring allegedly transported heroin, cocaine and narcotics pills between New York City and Syracuse, and the other allegedly sold cocaine in the suburbs of Syracuse and Oswego County.

Mr. Schneiderman’s release said his office “will not tolerate those who weaken our justice system and put New Yorkers’ safety at risk.”

State Police Superintendent George P. Beach said the arrest “sends a clear message to anyone who seeks to interfere with the integrity of our criminal justice process.”

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