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GetSmart About Drugs - A DEA Resource for Parents

News Release
September 17, 2002

Significant Drug Trafficking Organization Dismantled in Atlanta

The DEA Atlanta Field Division Office recently concluded a three-year investigation that targeted the command and control structure of a Mexican- based poly-drug organization.

On September 17, 2002, twenty-seven (27) suspected members of a major drug trafficking organization were indicted in the Northern District of Georgia for distribution and for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, marijuana, and/or methamphetamine. Arrest warrants were issued for those individuals named in the indictment.

In a major culmination of the investigation, four Federal Search Warrants were executed in Cobb County Georgia on September 19, 2002. The arrest warrants issued pursuant to the indictments were executed as well. As a result of those warrants, 31 defendants were arrested and two handguns, seven vehicles, and $413,914.00 in cash were seized.

DEA Atlanta conducted a series of enforcement activities throughout the lengthy investigation. To date, this investigation has yielded a total of 64 arrests, the seizures of 217 kilograms of cocaine, 40 pounds of methamphetamine, three pounds of ice (a potent form of methamphetamine), cash totaling $3,813,914.00, 2500 pounds of marijuana, five residences, 18 vehicles and nine handguns.

Atlanta functioned as a primary distribution center for the contraband, which was subsequently shipped to other cities in the Southeast and beyond, reaching as far as Birmingham, Alabama, Grand Rapids, Michigan; Chicago, Illinois, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. During the most recent and final phase of the case, the focus was upon a local cell head and his distribution network in the Atlanta metropolitan area.

The organization utilized tractor-trailers to smuggle large quantities of cocaine, marijuana and methamphetamine across the U.S./Mexico border. The primary source of supply for all of the drugs is an organization operating from the Reynoso, Altamirano and Guerrero areas of Mexico that based their distribution locations in metropolitan Atlanta.

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