A multistate drug investigation that began in Pueblo netted more than 160 pounds of methamphetamine, heroin and cocaine, 31 firearms and more than $1.2 million in assets, authorities said Thursday.
“Our officers engaged in street-level narcotics enforcement, developed information and rapidly, we realized this was going to be a big case,” Pueblo Police Chief Troy Davenport said at a news conference.
A task force that included the federal Drug Enforcement Agency and state agencies identified the Payan drug trafficking organization as the primary distributor of the drugs.
The task force identified 65 people in three states and Mexico as suspects.
“I know through intel sources we have and what we’ve heard throughout the community that this has definitely taken out some of the major drug traffickers, not just in Pueblo, but in the state of Colorado,” DEA’s agent Tim Scott said.
“This resulted in numerous pounds of poison, quite frankly, being taken off the streets, and being prevented from going into those that struggle with substance abuse,” Davenport said.
The bulk of the narcotics brought into the U.S. came through ports of entry stashed inside vehicles, though Scott said some of the drugs could have been smuggled along the border.
“This case led to indictments of several members of the Payan family,” Scott said.