Twenty seven individuals charged or arrested as part of joint law enforcement effort
BURLINGTON, Vt. – DEA New England Division Special Agent in Charge Brian D. Boyle and United States Attorney Christina E. Nolan announced the results of a multi-agency, multi-jurisdictional law enforcement effort that focused on drug trafficking in Rutland, Vermont and the surrounding area.
During the months-long operation conducted by federal, state, local, and county officers, and federal and state prosecutors, law enforcement arrested or charged 27 individuals, searched four residences, and seized 14 firearms (including two AR-style rifles), approximately 148 grams of fentanyl and heroin, approximately 260 grams of cocaine base, approximately 50 grams of cocaine, and $35,560 of suspected drug proceeds.
This operation stemmed from careful planning and collaboration by Vermont law enforcement at all levels. The enforcement surge involved the participation of the Drug Enforcement Administration; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; the Department of Homeland Security - Homeland Security Investigations; the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the United States Marshals Service; Vermont Drug Task Force; the Vermont State Police; the Rutland County Sherriff’s Office; the Rutland City Police Department; U.S. Customs and Border Protection - Air and Marine Operations. Crucial support was provided by the Office of the Rutland County State’s Attorney.
“These arrests and seizures in Southern Vermont denote DEA’s priority to aggressively pursue anyone who distributes these poisons,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Brian D. Boyle. “Illegal drug distribution ravages the very foundations of our families and communities here in the Green Mountain State. This operation demonstrates the strength of collaborative local, state and federal law enforcement efforts in Vermont and our strong partnership with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.”
“Today -- as we did last November in St. Johnsbury and last April in Brattleboro -- we announce the results of a team effort by law enforcement to combat drug trafficking and gun crime in one of the hardest hit areas of the state," said United States Attorney Christina E. Nolan added. "The Rutland area is suffering greatly under the weight of the drug crisis and related violence, and we deployed a sustained surge of enforcement resources to bring consequences to those selling deadly drugs and violating federal gun laws in that region of the state. The messages are simple. Out-of-state dealers should not come to Vermont; if they do, they will face serious consequences, no matter where in the state they do business. Addicted Vermonters involved in the drug trade will also be held accountable. But we urge those Vermonters to turn in their dealers and seek treatment. We want them to have their lives back.”
“These arrests are indicative of ATF’s commitment to rid our communities of dangerous drugs and illegal firearms," said Special Agent in Charge Kelly D. Brady of the ATF Boston Field Division. "Citizens in Vermont can rest assured that the ATF and our law enforcement partners are determined to ensure these communities remain safe and a great place to live. The success of this investigation is an outstanding example of our law enforcement community's resolve and determination."
“Operations like these are important in the struggle to protect this community from illicit drug trafficking and gun violence," said Rutland County State’s Attorney Rosemary Kennedy. "I want to thank the U.S. Attorney for leading this effort and all of the agencies that worked together to help protect Rutland County.”
“These arrests and seizures are the direct result of the close coordination between our federal, state, and local law enforcement partners,” said Anna Holden, Supervisory Senior Resident Agent of the FBI Albany Field Office’s Burlington RA. “Through continued operations, we have been able to rid our communities of dozens of dangerous individuals looking to wreak havoc through drugs and violence. There’s more work to be done, and the FBI, along with our partners, will continue to relentlessly pursue anyone looking to threaten the safety and stability of our neighborhoods.”
“As made evident by the successes of past and present joint law enforcement operations, the focus and commitment of our public safety community is remarkable,” said U.S. Marshal Bradley LaRose. “The relentless pursuit of those who act to threaten the well-being of our citizenry will undoubtedly continue. The Marshals Service is committed to contributing the resources necessary to support the zealous collaborative efforts of those who pursue justice as we move forward.”