News: Operation Pipeline Express
Story by Paul Caffrey
PHOENIX - Federal, state and local authorities announced the results of "Operation Pipeline Express," a 17-month multi-agency investigation responsible for dismantling a massive narcotics trafficking organization suspected of smuggling more than $33 million dollars' worth of drugs a month through Arizona's western desert.
On Oct. 27, federal and local investigators executed the third in a succession of large-scale enforcement actions tied to the probe, seizing more than two tons of marijuana, 19 weapons - including assault rifles, handguns, and shotguns - and nearly $200,000 in cash.
To date, the case has resulted in the seizure of more than 60,000 pounds of marijuana; in excess of 200 pounds of cocaine; approximately 160 pounds of heroin; more than $750,000 in cash; and nearly 110 weapons, including multiple assault rifles.