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Leveraging Social Media, Glen Rock Makes Arrest in Prescription Fraud Cases

The arrest of a 21-year-old New York man Tuesday night could lead to dozens of closed cases throughout the New York and New Jersey area, police say.

Correction: An earlier version misidentified which pharmacy filled the prescription on April 25.

Had 21-year-old Armend Salijaj of Manhattan 'liked' the , he'd likely be at cozier digs than the Bergen County Jail in Hackensack.

Salijaj was arrested in connection to an attempted prescription fraud bid that ended in a dramatic foot chase on Tuesday night, and police believe the capture could lead to numerous police departments solving similar outstanding cases.

The arrest, police tout, is a result of effective use of social media, alert police and cognizant citizens.

According to Det. James Calaski, the pharmacist at noticed a familiar man attempting to fill a prescription just past 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday. The individual, whom police identified as Salijaj, fit the description of a suspect , and unsuccessfully attempted to score oxycodone from the Rock Ridge Pharmacy the same day.

Recognizing the name of the doctor on the prescription and pictures of the suspect posted on the Glen Rock Police Facebook page, the alert Rock Ridge pharmacist called police. Calaski said Ptl. Murray Yang confronted the suspect in the store and after a brief questioning, the suspect bolted through an alley but eventually was captured by Yang and Ptl. Scott McGovern near the train tracks.

According to Calaski, Salijaj along with two males and a female were responsible for similar prescription frauds in Fair Lawn, Hawthorne, Spring Valley (NY) and Brooklyn. While Salijaj admitted to being responsible for the Glen Rock fraud attempts, he refused to disclose the identities of his accomplices, the detective told Patch.

Police, who had loaded clearer pictures of the alleged crew on Facebook hours before the attempt on Tuesday night, say the ring could be responsible for twelve known prescription fraud cases and dozens more.

Calaski said the investigation revealed Salijaj, who emigrated from Kosovo, also had about 20 stolen drivers licenses and could be involved in further cases of theft. Salijaj told detectives the Tuesday arrest actually fell on his birthday (official documents show he was born on June 15, but detectives said Salijaj claimed his father wrote down the wrong date on immigration papers).

"It's a sign of the times," Calaski said of the rising number of drug fraud cases. "You look at the type of fraud we're dealing with...we're just seeing a lot more of it."

The prescription police say Salijaj used was traced to a New York doctor, whom police say is not believed to be complicit in the fraud ring.

Salijaj is being held on $150,000 bail and is charged with two counts each of attempt to obtain CDS by fraud, receiving stolen property, forgery by uttering, and identity theft/impersonation of another. He was also charged with resisting arrest by flight.

Police are confident the remaining three suspects (see photos posted to the right) will be brought to justice, and soon.

"It's just a matter of time before we find them or someone recognizes them," Calaski said.

Anyone with further information of the ongoing investigation is urged to call the Glen Rock Detective's Bureau at (201) 670-3948.

Bo May 16, 2012 at 09:22 PM
Nice work Ptl. Murray Yang and Scott McGovern in getting these predators off our streets. After the Pharmacy shooting in New York, we know it can happen anywhere. Thank You!
James Kleimann May 16, 2012 at 10:33 PM
I suggest 'Rockers on the Book of Faces 'like' the Glen Rock Police Department's Facebook page here: http://www.facebook.com/GRPDNJ?ref=ts
ado May 21, 2012 at 07:00 PM
Armend salijaj is a good kid, is applying for FDNY and is a washington heights football player never has been in trouble before with the law... But I honestly blame the goverment for giving him these sort of pills after his surgery on his shoulder from playing football.. And now he became a addict to them and wasn't using his mind on what he was doing...
Adriatik May 21, 2012 at 07:34 PM
Armend Salijaj is a great person. He is loving and caring and always looks out for other. He is a great role model to other and never has run into the law before. These pills where for his football injury for the pain in his shoulder. The news is making him look like a monster when he isnt at all. Free Armend !
James Kleimann May 21, 2012 at 07:56 PM
Nita, I've deleted your comment for profanity. Please feel free to comment again with less explicit language.
nita May 21, 2012 at 08:09 PM
Sorry James this is just sad to see a family man with a great heart be put away. He had plans for a bright future and now it could all be possibly ruined, he is a wonderful brother, son & cousin with a huge heart. I wish my long loving friend the very best and we will all be there beside him. Free Armend<3
adam May 21, 2012 at 08:10 PM
You media people get ur facts right first... My brother never had 20 I.d's on him, ask his arresting officer.. One thing I will say whom ever wrote this I will see you in court!
Babie BoO May 21, 2012 at 08:18 PM
How can you people be so ignerant Ur so quick to point a finger at an Innecent boy that has never done anything wrong but got pulled into the wrong direction because of these stupid doctors that will give a person any kind of pill just to shut them up. He had surgery for a great injury and was given something to ease his pain... But all this doctors know that they are addictive and people become dependent on them but they still give them out with no problem. You stupid people talking about the killing that happened in long island no you stupid people look at this kid in the pictures and take a look at the moron that killed those people there is a big defference he was a junky this kid is a good person in a screwed up situation and all you can do is sit and point fingers. There are drug dealers killing children everyday with their garbage and no one says a word .. There are people steeling from the government and no one does a thing about it ... Now think about it really hard if one of ur kids or even friends would be in this situation where they just screwed up from all the bad influences in this world would you be so quick to point and judge I DON'T THINK SO ..... Free Armend !!
James Kleimann May 21, 2012 at 08:19 PM
I've clarified the statement, Adam. To his friends and family, I'm planning on doing a series on prescription drug cases and how numerous people are impacted. If you'd like to speak with me further, feel free to shoot me an e-mail at james.kleimann@patch.com.
Valdrin S May 21, 2012 at 08:26 PM
This police department should start doing real police work instead of trying to turn one of the best people I ever met into a monster. Armend doesn't have any prior records. The only thing that's apparent is a lazy police department incapable of doing a job which we pay them with our money to do. Officer Calaski should be asked to leave his job and become a reporter like the one who wrote this article because lying and smearing seems to be their best quality.
Rock May 21, 2012 at 08:54 PM
He was committing fraud, and he got caught. Its simple, really.
genie cerda May 21, 2012 at 10:16 PM
Armend has a beautiful heart and has good intentions he's a young kid who messed up.He's a college student, a football player and is looking forward to being a firefighter in the near future. He doesn't deserve to be treated or spoken about the way you guys did in the article. The prescriptions were for injuries he got playing football. Give the kid a chance this could ruin his chance of becoming a fire fire and limit his options on achieving his dream. The bail is extremely high and you guys are being way too hard on him. The system is fucked up and everything is about money. Please free Armend he really has the heart of an Angel and has so much going for him. Free Armend Salijaj <3
Mergim May 22, 2012 at 12:42 AM
This is my brother!!! He played football his wholeeeeeee entire life!! He had 5 total concussions and he tore his ACL in his shoulder! He got addicted to what the GOVERNMENT distirbutes to us!! He's a great kid, he never got into trouble with the law in his entire life!!! U guys are tryna turn my brother into a monster of a human being which he is FAR from!! FREE MY BROTHER ARMEND!!
Anonymous t May 22, 2012 at 12:59 AM
Armed is such a sweet boy. This is not his fault I too blame the govt for their choice of meds to give to patients. Armed graduated collage and is applying for the FDNY and it's a shame that he could be subjected to any jail time.
Cody T May 22, 2012 at 12:59 AM
Armend Salijaj is an awesome person , the type to put others before himself, he's been injured many of times because of football and I could vouch for him. I dormed and played football with the kid. You guys are giving false information, it's not cool. You stopping a kid who's trying to due something with his life. Instead you turning him into a MONSTER--------- lower the Bail "FREE ARMEND"
Alban...Bk May 22, 2012 at 08:58 AM
Armend Saliaj is a very kind person...He unfortunately was injured when playing football for Washington Heights and the doctors prescribed pain killers for his shoulder pain...Unfortunately these government mandated pain killers are addictive and he soon needed the pills to function...I strongly believe that Armend Saliaj should walk as a FREE man because he has never had any trouble with the law before...he made the mistake while hooked on medicine prescribed to him by the government that did not think of the repercussions that the medicine would have on the individual they only care about the $$$ This is how our government makes money by getting our children hooked on prescription drugs...
David G May 22, 2012 at 07:05 PM
Armemd is a kind cool person...the media is just making him look like a complete monster when in real life it isnt...those pills were for his football injury for when he got hurt. The media is all aboht taking the truth and flipping it around making us look like the bad guy.Armend is a cool kid and so is his family. He isnt the type to cause destruction or hurt anybody.Next time get the real story straight before putting up something that clearly isnt true.....#FREE ARMEND!!!!!!
Getyourfactsstraight May 24, 2012 at 03:14 AM
James you call your self a "journalist", your article is a big lie and all these people here are just stating the stupidity and hypocrisy in your article, get your facts straight man!
frank May 27, 2012 at 01:17 PM
So the pharmacy should not have called the police? The police should not have gone to the Pharmacy? The doctor that they stole the script from is wrong? He ran from the police they should not have chased him? Of course he's a good kid nobody is disputing that. Of course the doctor gave him the script nobody is saying he didn't. But when you cross the line this is what happens and it's nobody's fault but your own.

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