Arizona drug cell linked to Sinaloa Cartel busted

Associated Press Published: July 6, 2012
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TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Authorities say they've busted an elaborate drug trafficking cell in Arizona that's linked to the deadly Sinaloa Cartel from Mexico.

Tempe police announced Friday that 20 people have been arrested and $2.4 million was found after a six-month investigation involving local and federal authorities. Police say they obtained 15 search warrants and seized an airplane, 14 weapons, 30 pounds of methamphetamine and 3 tons of marijuana.

Drug Enforcement Administration officials say the bust was part of "Operation Nayarit Stampede" aimed at attacking a drug trafficking organization that stretched across the Mexico border and into Arizona.

Officials say the operation sent drugs to New York, Alabama, California and throughout other parts of the country. The drugs were transported through hidden compartments in commercial tractor-trailers crossing the Mexican border.