A concerted effort among federal and local law enforcement agencies led to a series of raids across the city in a massive drug bust.
Law enforcement conducted the drug bust Thursday. Search warrants issued resulted in 31 arrests. While 35 individuals face charges, 4 presently remain at large.
In addition to the arrests, police collected weapons, drugs, and money. Among the seizures, authorities gathered 30 guns, 22 pounds of drugs consisting of meth, heroin, and fentanyl, as well as $70,000.
Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid pain reliever, became a controversial drug in recent years because of its addictive properties and potency. Overdose deaths have skyrocketed over the past decade, hitting the midwest particularly hard.
This latest drug bust demonstrates law enforcement’s focus on the growing opioid epidemic. The assistant special agent in charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Indianapolis office, Michael Gannon, referred to the bust as “a big win.”
He went on to characterize the individuals charged as violent. Gannon said they terrorized Hoosiers while “peddling poison” in Indianapolis. He also said their operation distributed multiple pounds of dangerous drugs in a “high-level drug trafficking organization.”
Drug Bust Result of Inter-Agency Cooperation
The raids came after 6 months of investigation into the drug organization. A collection of both local and federal government law enforcement agencies came together. They shared information and built the case against the drug ring.
The primary agencies investigating the case consisted of the DEA, the IRS, the IMPD Drug Task Force, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
They received additional support from the FBI, as well as the local Lawrence Police Department.
Lawrence Deputy Chief Gary Woodruff praised their cooperation efforts. “When federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies partner for comprehensive investigations, the resulting arrests, along with the firearms and drugs removed from the streets, inevitably result in reduced opportunity for violent crime to occur,” he said.
Those charged in the drug bust, if convicted, face potential life sentences.