HALL COUNTY, Ga. — Authorities say a late September drug bust at several locations in Hall County ended with large quantities of drugs, guns and ill-gotten cash off the streets.
The overall street value of the drugs - which included meth, heroin, cocaine and pot - was estimated at more than $1.83 million. A majority of the drugs seized were methamphetamine which accounted for 15 kilograms - or about 33 pounds - of the drugs state and local agencies found across five residences.
The bust also uncovered half a kilogram of black tar heroin, over one kilogram of cocaine and over two pounds of marijuana along with 200 sildenafil pills. Aside from the drugs themselves, authorities also seized $21,500 in cash along with 14 handguns, five rifles, and a shotgun.
Following the investigation, agents also arrested 28-year-old Armando Duarte-Herrera, 24-year-old Jose Manuel Duarte-Duarte, 58-year-old Roberto Henriquez-Hernandez, 36-year-old Cruz Mauricio Guzman, 42-year-old Jose Luis Pacheco-Rojas, 26-year-old Byron Manolo Ramirez-Ramirez, and 42-year-old Everardo Santiago-Moran.
The men were booked on individual charges for trafficking meth, heroin, and cocaine along with "intent to distribute" charges for each drug. They also face charges of possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, felony possession of marijuana, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and using a communication device in committing or facilitating a drug transaction.
The seizures and arrests were the culmination of a months-long investigation that involved several agencies from local narcotics squads and the Hall County Sheriff's Office., to the FBI, U.S. Marshals and the Department of Homeland Security.
“Friday’s operation resulted in arrests and seizures that will make news, but it’s the weeks of tedious and difficult investigation that made those possible,” Hall County Sheriff Gerald Couch said.
The seizures happened following search warrants at residences in the 3000 block of Gaines Mill Road, the 200 block of Cronic Drive, the 2000 block of Dixie Drive, the 3000 block of Wallace Road and the 3000 block of Coker Road.
“While we spotlight this significant case, the MANS Task Force and other law enforcement partners are always on the mission to make our community safer, and I thank them for their ongoing service,” Sheriff Couch said.