Being charged with a drug crime is intimidating enough, but when state and federal authorities work together to compile evidence over a lengthy period of time, the person charged with a crime will need an especially strong criminal defense. That is the case for 18 individuals in Louisiana who were arrested and charged with serious drug crimes last month.
Police claim the accused parties belonged to a drug ring with ties to a Mexican drug cartel. The suspects are from Waterproof, Ferriday, Vidalia, New Orleans and Clayton. One person is from out of state.
The Louisiana State Police Bureau of Investigations, U.S. Homeland Security Investigations, the Tensas Parish Sheriff's Office and the Concordia Parish Sheriff's Office worked together to make the arrests. Authorities seized $100,000 in cash, over 100 pounds of marijuana, weapons and about 90 ounces of cocaine. The arrest warrants for the 18 suspects were issued on Aug. 22.
All 18 individuals were charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute marijuana, conspiracy to distribute marijuana, conspiracy to possession with intent to distribute Schedule II drugs, transactions involving proceeds from drug transactions, conspiracy to distribute cocaine and charges under the racketeering act.
The ages of the suspects ranged from 20 years to 51 years, and if convicted on all counts, each person could spend up to 120 years in prison. Each one is also faced with the possibility of $1,100,000 in fines. According to media sources, the investigation is ongoing and authorities expect to make additional arrests.
Source: Zacharytoday.com, "Multiple drug arrests in Tensas, Concordia parishes," Sept. 4, 2012