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U.S. authorities arrest 27 linked to Mexican Sinaloa Cartel

Mexico City, Mexico — After a two year investigation, more than two dozen people have been arrested on drug charges that involved a Mexican cartel moving cocaine into the U.S. The 27 people were arrested via Operation Tripwire, an investigation U.S. authorities have been working on that involved members of the Sinaloa Cartel.

The trafficking network spanned from Los Angeles, California to Tucson, Arizona and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where cocaine was moved from Mexico. The United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, Scott Brady said “this is a large organization that was trafficking hundreds of kilograms of cocaine throughout the country and has direct ties to the Sinaloa cartel in Mexico.”

According to US authorities, the investigations (involving different police corporations, including DEA agents based in Mexico), began when an agent in Pittsburgh identified an address that received large volumes of suspicious packages from California. From there, agents began working on identifying other members of the network throughout the U.S.

For more than seven months, authorities intercepted U.S. calls by some of the alleged traffickers with the cartel’s leaders in Mexico. On Wednesday, the 27 were taken into custody simultaneously in California, Arizona and Pennsylvania.

U.S. Authorities reported the seizure of more than $1.3 million in cash and just over 140 kilograms of cocaine. The 27 arrested face a sentence of between 10 years and life in prison.