2013 records largest drug operation in Southeast Iowa


(Ottumwa)— A report released today by the Ottumwa Police Department indicates 2013 saw the largest number of drug arrests.

A press release issued by Lt. Jason Bell from the Southeast Iowa Inter-Agency Drug Task Force says since July of 2012 members of the Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement, the drug task force and the Drug Enforcement Administration Des Moines residence office have been conducting an investigation of a multi-layered methamphetamine drug trafficking organization located in and around the Ottumwa area.

During the investigation almost 27 controlled transactions of meth ranging in quantity from less than one gram up to one ounce were conducted on multiple defendants.

On June 15th of last year officers executed a search warrant at a public storage facility in Ottumwa which was a suspected “stash” location of meth.  Entry was made into the facility and about 33 pounds of meth were discovered and seized. One June 19th of 2013 officers began taking enforcement action against the organization and executed search warrants at three locations in Ottumwa.  Seized as a result of the search warrants were almost one ounce of meth, scales, drug packaging materials, drug paraphernalia, drug ledgers, 37-thousand dollars, four vehicles, a motorcycle and numerous other assets.

As a result of the investigation a total of 35 individuals were arrested and taken into custody by federal officials.