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48 people detained in Pennsylvania drug sting

According to the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office, a June 23 drug raid focused on a variety of dealers with connections to two loosely tied organizations that distribute drugs throughout at least three counties in the state. Law enforcement officials detained 48 individuals accused of being drug dealers, including three Birdsboro resents, authorities reported.

The June 23 raid was the result of a year-long investigation that involved multiple law enforcement agencies, the Attorney General's Office stated. Known as "Operation Tourniquet," the investigation targeted drug dealers who distributed cocaine, heroin, marijuana, methamphetamine and prescription medications in the counties of Lancaster, Berks and Schuylkill. Law enforcement officials reportedly obtained and executed 17 search warrants, which purportedly yielded a dune buggy, nine cars, 10 firearms as well as approximately $40,000 in cash.

The three Birdsboro residents detained in the raid were all adults: a 22-year-old woman, a 53-year-old man and a 28-year-old man, reportedly. Officials allege that each individual is a street-level drug dealer. All three are now facing charges of criminal use of a communications facility and multiple counts of possession of a controlled substance, reportedly.

While officials from federal agencies such as the FBI and U.S. Marshals Service assisted in the operation, it was not clear immediately following the raid whether any of the detained individuals are facing federal drug charges. If so, it would be critical for the accused individuals to retain the counsel and resources of a criminal defense attorney. For, federal drug cases present more complex constitutional issues than do drug cases at the state level. In addition, federal drug cases carry mandatory sentences, which may include a lengthy prison sentence.

Source: Daily Local News, "Three Birdsboro residents arrested in drug ring investigation", Caroline Sweeney, June 24, 2014

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