Police in Georgia have reported that 48 people were taken into custody during a recent drug sweep. The arrests were part of a multi-agency investigation, which was dubbed “Operation Taking Care of Business,” into heroin and methamphetamine trafficking and distribution in north Georgia. The arrests were announced during a July 11 press conference. During the investigation, deputies from the Forsyth and Fulton County Sheriff’s Offices were assisted by officers assigned to the Appalachian Regional Drug Enforcement Task Force and agents from the Georgia and Federal Bureaus of Investigation.
Using surveillance techniques over the course of a year, investigators identified a list of suspects. This evidence was then used to obtain search and arrest warrants. Many of these suspects were already in custody when the roundup began on July 10. When police executed search warrants that had been issued in connection with the narcotics investigation, they allegedly discovered about 50 kilograms of methamphetamine and approximately half a kilogram of heroin. Investigators are also said to have seized six automobiles, 20 guns and about $70,000 in U.S. currency.
According to the GBI, the suspects would have earned more than $700,000 if they had sold the seized drugs on the street. An FCSO representative said that the operation took dangerous drugs out of circulation and disrupted a major criminal enterprise. Police say that more arrests are likely.
Police likely hope to make more arrests because some of the suspects they already have in custody are expected to cooperate in return for reduced charges or more lenient sentences. Prosecutors often make attractive plea offers when investigations are ongoing, but they tend to become far less generous when police say that they have all the evidence they need. This is why criminal defense attorneys may advise individuals charged with drug offenses during major narcotics investigations to act quickly if they wish to enter into plea agreements.