Multiple law enforcement agencies participated in a large scale drug and gang bust that resulted in the arrests of 80 people, on Thursday. Authorities are calling it the largest mass drug arrest in Colorado history.
At a press conference Thursday, U.S. Attorney John Walsh said that nearly 500 officers took 80 people into custody in a coordinated sweep that raided approximately 97 different addresses this morning. Authorities also said that a total of 97 defendants have been charged in the bust, leaving only 17 individuals that were not arrested this morning and are still at large. Incredibly, no one was injured during the morning raid.
Walsh also said that much of the drug related arrests revolved around the trafficking of cocaine with origins from Mexico, however the name of the source was not given. The amount of cocaine seized and street value was not announced at the press conference, but Walsh did say "a very substantial amount of cocaine" and "many kilos" of cocaine were seized. Authorities also seized crack cocaine, approximately a pound of crystal meth and several firearms. Walsh added that the cocaine and crack cocaine was destined for sale on the streets of Colorado.
The Denver Post later revealed the total drugs, money and weapons seized: Eleven weapons, $415,140 in cash, 26,129 grams of cocaine, 1,000 grams of crack and one pound of methamphetamine.
Four drug distribution organizations were taken down as a result of Thursday's bust.
Authorities have also stated that the roots of the investigation stem from investigation into more than a dozen 2009 bank robberies by a sect of Blood gang members dubbed the "Hoppin' Hooded Bandits." The bandits got their name for their tendency to hop over bank counters and wear hooded sweatshirts during their robberies, according to Westword.
9News reports that the Metro Gang Task Force, FBI, DEA, Colorado State Patrol, CBI amongst several others were all involved in the bust. Raids between 4:30 a.m. and 7 a.m., targeted dozens of locations across the metro area including Aurora, Denver and many locations across Adams County, according to Fox31. CBS4 reports that at least 12 children were also taken into child protective services as a result of the arrests.