DRUGSA federal grand jury has indicted 17 individuals, 11 of whom have now been arrested, following a coordinated effort to disrupt drug trafficking on the reservation of the Colorado River Indian Tribes.  The charges include drug trafficking and conspiracy to commit drug trafficking. The investigation was spearheaded by the La Paz County Narcotics Task Force, which includes the La Paz County Sheriff’s Office, the United States Border Patrol, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Colorado River Indian Tribes Police Department.  The Bureau of Indian Affairs provided significant assistance with the investigation, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Marshals Service, and the Parker Police Department also assisted with the operation.  United States Attorney John S. Leonardo stated, “This joint investigation exemplifies how federal, state, and tribal law enforcement agencies can effectively disrupt drug trafficking activity in Indian Country when they coordinate their resources.”    “The DEA is committed to protecting Arizona tribal communities from the dangers of methamphetamine, which undoubtedly scars the person and the community it plagues,” said Doug Coleman, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA in Arizona.  “Drug traffickers who exploit the tribal community in which they live, to hide from law enforcement, will find no such refuge.  DEA Agents, with our state, local, federal, and tribal partners, will pursue, target, and bring those criminals to justice.”         Convictions for the drug charges carry a maximum penalty of 20 years, a $1,000,000 fine, or both. The investigation is ongoing and additional arrests are anticipated.  The prosecution is being handled by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Arizona, Phoenix.

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