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Sheriff Grady Judd Announces Major Drug Busts Targeting Central Florida Trafficking Organizations

In a significant development in the fight against drug trafficking, Sheriff Grady Judd recently held a press conference to discuss the outcomes of multi-agency investigations targeting two central Florida-based drug trafficking organizations. The collaborative efforts of various law enforcement agencies led to the seizure of multiple kilograms of fentanyl and cocaine, as well as the arrest of 11 individuals involved in these illicit activities.

The investigations carried out in December and January, were a joint operation involving a coalition of law enforcement agencies committed to eradicating drug trafficking in the region. The following agencies played a crucial role in this coordinated effort: Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Central Florida HIDTA (High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area) Task Force, Winter Haven Police Department, 10th Judicial Circuit State Attorney’s Office led by State Attorney Brian Haas, Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), Florida Attorney General’s Office represented by Attorney General Ashley Moody, Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and the United States Attorney for the Middle District of Florida, Roger B. Handberg, from the Department of Justice.

Sheriff Grady Judd emphasized the importance of collaboration among these agencies, highlighting the shared commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of the community. The success of these operations serves as a testament to the power of joint efforts in tackling complex and far-reaching criminal enterprises.

One notable aspect of the investigations is the assistance provided by the State Financial Assistance for Fentanyl Eradication (S.A.F.E) Florida Program, managed by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. This program played a crucial role in supporting the law enforcement agencies involved in targeting the trafficking of fentanyl, a potent and dangerous synthetic opioid responsible for a significant number of overdose deaths.

During the press conference, Sheriff Grady Judd expressed gratitude for the dedication and hard work of all the agencies involved, emphasizing the importance of such partnerships in addressing the evolving challenges posed by drug trafficking organizations. The arrests and seizure of illicit substances mark a significant step forward in dismantling these criminal enterprises and disrupting the flow of dangerous drugs into communities.

The joint efforts of the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, the HIDTA Task Force, and the various federal and state agencies showcased the effectiveness of a united front against drug trafficking. As the legal proceedings unfold, these arrests serve as a stark reminder that law enforcement agencies remain vigilant in their pursuit of justice and the protection of the community from the devastating impacts of drug-related crimes.



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Patrick Zarrelli

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