DEA dismantles southern AZ drug trafficking ring

SIERRA VISTA, AZ (Tucson News Now) - A two-year investigation into a Douglas area drug trafficking ring has led to the arrest of two people on Tuesday, July 31, according to a news release from the
U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

Agents from the DEA's Sierra Vista Resident Office coordinated a multi-agency enforcement operation Tuesday, serving three state of Arizona authorized warrants at two residences and one business identified by investigators.

"Drug traffickers have a misconception that they can conceal their illicit activities by hiding themselves in rural areas of our state," said Doug Coleman, Special Agent in Charge of DEA in Arizona, in the release. "However, DEA agents will never relent in their pursuit of criminals who traffic these dangerous drugs in our communities and throughout our country."

Thanks to several leads, the agents were able to gather enough information to identify their main suspect, Jose Durazo and several others who were allegedly involved in a bulk marijuana smuggling operation from Mexico into the U.S.

According to the release, agents also discovered the group used several techniques - from vehicles with hidden compartments to air cannons and even shipping companies like UPS and FedEx to distribute the marijuana across the U.S.

So far more than 1,600 pounds of marijuana has been seized by agents that was destined for shipment to other U.S. cities.

The operation was led by DEA's Sierra Vista Resident Office, and supported by HSI-Douglas, U.S. Border Patrol as well as detectives from the Douglas Police Department and the Cochise County Sheriff's Office.

All suspects have been booked into Cochise County jail and are awaiting further proceedings.  This investigation will be prosecuted by the Cochise County Attorney's Office.

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