NEW BEDFORD (WBSM) — Three people have been taken into custody following a street-level drug investigation in New Bedford.

On June 3, New Bedford Police were conducting surveillance in the city's near North End when they observed a drug transaction taking place in the area of the North Front Street and Phillips Avenue intersection between two females and an alleged male dealer.

Both females were stopped and found to have three plastic baggies of crack cocaine, police said. The alleged dealer, identified as Eliezer Rivera, 29, was stopped in his vehicle on Coffin Avenue near Riverside Park.

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Police searched Rivera and said his vehicle and found him to have approximately 16 grams of crack cocaine, a digital scale and baggies. Police also recovered a Bulldog .44 caliber revolver loaded with five rounds of ammunition.

Rivera was charged with the distribution of crack cocaine, possession with intent to distribute, and illegal carrying of a loaded firearm without a license, among other serious charges.

The two females, identified as Gail Farland, 60, and Cheryl Ann Butler, 55, were arrested and charged with possession of crack cocaine and conspiracy to violate the controlled substance laws.

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