Feds charge 32 in rural methamphetamine ring

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by MATT GOODMAN

WFAA

Posted on November 15, 2013 at 5:04 PM

The U.S. Attorney’s Office on Friday charged 32 suspects with conspiracy to distribute hundreds of pounds of methamphetamine throughout 10 rural Texas counties. 

The federal complaint, which was unsealed this morning, formally charges the suspects with conspiracy to possess a controlled substance with intent to distribute, said Sarah Saldaña, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. Thirty-one of the 32 are in custody, she added. 

“These arrests illustrate the success of our District’s federal, state and local law enforcement partners’ collaboration in taking down these drug trafficking organizations — whether they operate in large communities, or in several rural counties as this one allegedly did,” Saldaña said in a prepared statement.

The feds say the drug ring was centered in Stephenville, but the suspects allegedly distributed hundreds of pounds of methamphetamine throughout Erath County, Parker County, Palo Pinto County, Comanche County, Eastland County, Stephens County, Hood County, Hamilton County, Somerville County and Taylor County. 

While building their case, officers made undercover buys and served search warrants that resulted in cash and “substantial” amounts of the narcotic. Since the investigation began in 2012, more than 100 people were identified as being part of the so-called Brittany Barron Drug Trafficking Organization.

“Law enforcement has dismantled several of the DTO’s suppliers, and it continues to investigate others that remain in operation,” wrote U.S. Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Kathy Colvin in a release.

Prosecutors have 30 days to present the case to a grand jury to secure indictments. 

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