Mobile Enforcement Team Wraps up Portland Deployment
Portland, Oregon – Today, Rodney G. Benson, Special Agent in Charge, Seattle Field Division, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Karin J. Immergut, United States Attorney in Oregon, and Derrick Foxworth, the Chief of the Portland Police Bureau, announced the culmination of a joint DEA/Portland Police Bureau special operation targeting gang-related drug violence in northeast Portland, Oregon.
This special operation began on November 22, 2004, after the Portland Police Bureau requested DEA assistance in targeting violent gangs and drug traffickers operating in the Northeast section of Portland. DEA’s Mobile Enforcement Team (MET) was deployed from Seattle to work in Portland as a task force with DEA agents from Portland and with officers from the Portland Police Bureau’s Drugs and Vice Division, Gang Enforcement Unit, and Neighborhood Response Unit.
The enforcement operation spanned the entire five months and involved the execution of 15 search warrants. This resulted in the seizure of 1,039 grams of crack cocaine, 1,270 grams of cocaine, 11 grams of heroin, 2,004 grams of methamphetamine, seven (7) handguns, four (4) vehicles, and more than $36,000 in United States currency.
The United States Attorney’s Office in Oregon will charge 18 of the 47 individuals arrested in Federal court with violations of 21 U.S.C., Sections 846 and 841. These individuals, many of who are repeat offenders, face stiff penalties if convicted. The remaining 29 defendants face a wide range of charges in state court.
The DEA MET groups were formed in 1995 as a way of responding to state and local law enforcement’s concerns about the spread of drug trafficking and the associated violence. The more than two dozen DEA MET teams operating throughout the United States are tasked with identifying and dismantling violent drug trafficking groups that have gained a foothold in some urban and rural areas.
DEA Special Agent in Charge, Rodney G. Benson, stated that “the DEA Mobile Enforcement Team concept is to allocate Federal law enforcement resources to urban and rural areas experiencing high levels of violence associated with drug trafficking. These MET groups, as is the case here in Portland, have had an immediate and positive impact on the communities in which they have operated.”
U.S. Attorney Karin J. Immergut added that: “The success of this operation shows how important it is to coordinate local, state, and federal law enforcement resources to combat serious crime.”
Every Defendant Is Presumed Innocent Until and Unless Proven Guilty Beyond a Reasonable Doubt.
Rodney G. Benson, Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in-Charge,
Seattle Field Division, has provided a radio clip commenting on this
MET deployment to Portland, Oregon. The radio actuality can be accessed
by doing the following: