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Wednesday September 26, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- The New York man local police call the "kingpin" of a North County crack cocaine ring is being held on $1 million bail after pleading not guilty to drug charges.

Clifton Sumlin, 41, of the Bronx, was arraigned Wednesday in Berkshire Superior Court on single counts of second-offense cocaine distribution and violating a drug-free school zone.

Police allege Sumlin sold crack to a police informant in the North Adams Big Y parking lot in September 2007. In August, Sumlin was picked up by North Adams Police on an outstanding warrant related to a Berkshire County Drug Task Force investigation.

According to police, Sumlin ran a crack cocaine distribution network from 2007 to 2009 with ties to a larger network in the Bronx. He allegedly brought drug dealers from New York and set them up in business in North Adams.

According to police and prosecutors, Sumlin has a history of drug convictions and uses numerous aliases.

The description of Sumlin as a drug kingpin was dismissed by his previous attorney, Mark Pasquarillo, who described Sumlin as a unemployed man who livs with his mother.

On Wednesday, Sumlin appeared with attorney Richard D. LeBlanc and was remanded to the Berkshire County Jail and House of Correction on $100,000 cash or $1 million bond.

Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Richard M. Locke is prosecuting the case. A pretrial hearing is scheduled for Jan. 9.

Sumlin's other aliases include Anthony Ammes, Clapp, Leroy Sumlin, Cliffton Summer, Clifton Summers, Clifton Ammes, Lerdy Sumlin and Clifton Summer.