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News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 10, 2005

Federal, State and Local Law Enforcement Conduct Major Sweep of Alleged Cocaine Traffickers in Volusia County Area

MAY 10--Mark R. Trouville, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Miami Field Division, U.S. Attorney Paul I. Perez, Middle District of Florida, and Sheriff Ben F. Johnson, Volusia County Sheriff’s Office, announced today the arrests of several individuals on federal charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine. If convicted the defendants each face a minimum mandatory ten years of imprisonment and up to life imprisonment.

Early this morning more than 100 law enforcement officers began arresting thirteen defendants being sought on federal drug conspiracy charges. Simultaneously, search warrants were executed at six locations in Deland, Florida. According to the arrest affidavit, the investigation began in April of 2002 when the law enforcement investigators began looking into the alleged drug activity of Devon Somers. During this investigation more than twenty kilograms of cocaine were seized that were headed for distribution in central Florida. The arrest affidavit also alleges the organization employed various methods to smuggle cocaine into the U.S. from the Caribbean and Central America. These methods included the use of cruise lines and containers on large ships.

Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Mark R. Trouville said, “These arrests demonstrate the commitment of DEA to infiltrate and dismantle organized groups that traffic drugs in our communities. We would like to commend our law enforcement partners at the Volusia Bureau of Investigation and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office for their efforts, which contributed to the enormous success of this investigation.” U.S. Attorney Paul I. Perez stated, “The combined efforts of federal, state and local law enforcement have put another organized drug trafficking group out of business today. Our office is committed to reach beyond the shores of Volusia County to ensure these illegal drugs are stopped before they reach the streets of our community.” "Today is a very good day for the law-abiding citizens of Central Florida," said Volusia County Sheriff Ben F. Johnson. "This organization moved large quantities of dangerous and harmful drugs, and it was good investigative teamwork and the combined resources on the local, state and federal level that led to today's arrests. This is a textbook example of law enforcement cooperation at its best."

This case was investigated by the DEA, the U.S. Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office, and the Deland Police
Department. The Volusia Bureau of Investigations (VBI) also assisted which is made up of the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office, ICE, FDLE, the Daytona Beach Police Department, the New Smyrna Police Department, the Port Orange Police Department, and the Daytona Beach Shores Department of Public Safety. Investigators from the Central Florida HIDTA Task Force also assisted in the investigation.

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