The Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office announced the results of its “Operation Long Reach”—the federal indictment of 22 residents of central Texas. The Sheriff’s Office said that the methamphetamine trafficking scheme is allegedly responsible for the distribution of more than 1,000 pounds of meth with a street value of more than $24 million.
Details of the arrests and indictments
According to the Sheriff’s Office, the 22 suspects are connected to a Mexican drug cartel. The scheme operated in the Texas counties of Erath, Hamilton, Comanche, Hill, Bosque, Tarrant, Dallas, Bexar and Hood. The sheriff’s investigators worked undercover in purchasing methamphetamine from the suspected traffickers. The investigation discovered that meth was being sold and transported in Hamilton and surrounding counties and was directly tied to a criminal organization with roots in the city of Dallas and in Mexico.
Investigators conducted more than 200 hours of interviews and hundreds more hours of surveillance during the investigation. They also monitored social media sites and recovered more than 100,000 pages of conversations between alleged drug traffickers and dealers and users.
Representatives of the Sheriff’s Office said that liquid methamphetamine was smuggled into the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex where it was later converted to crystal methamphetamine and sold in kilogram quantities. The Sheriff’s Office also stated that the 22 defendants were “directly linked” to a Mexican drug cartel and had ties to the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas, the Aryan Circle, Tango Blast, and the Bloods Criminal Street gang.
The charges stated in the indictments
The charges stated in the indictments handed down by a grand jury in the Eastern District of Texas charged each of the defendants with ““knowingly and intentionally possessing with the intent to manufacture and distribute 500 grams or more or a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine and 50 grams of more of methamphetamine.” If convicted, the individual defendants can be sentenced to a minimum of 10 years in prison and a fine not exceeding $10 million.
Solid advice from a criminal defense lawyer
As indicated by the possible sentences, these individuals are facing serious criminal charges. Anyone facing the same or similar charges may benefit from consulting with an experienced criminal defense attorney for an analysis of the evidence, the suggestion of potential defenses, and where appropriate, assistance in negotiating an acceptable plea agreement.