Feds' crackdown on Baltimore drug trade nets 90 indicted, 51 guns, $1M cash
Federal authorities charged 90 suspects related to separate drug conspiracies in Baltimore in the month of July alone as part of an ongoing partnership between federal, state and local agencies to crack down on violent crime in Maryland’s largest city.
Baltimore’s U.S. District Attorney announced midnight Saturday morning that authorities also seized 51 guns, more than $1 million in cash and large volumes of fentanyl, heroin, cocaine and marijuana as a part of the operation.
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“Reducing violent crime in Baltimore is job one. It’s what we in law enforcement think about morning, noon, and night,” U.S. Attorney Robert K. Hur said in a statement. “We will continue to do everything we can to prosecute the violent criminals who wreak havoc in and terrorize Baltimore’s neighborhoods.”
Baltimore has been in the national spotlight since President Trump first called the city a “rat and rodent infested mess” in response to criticism from House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings, D-Md. on conditions in border detention centers.
Trump has been called a “racist” by Speaker Pelosi and other Dems for his remarks against Baltimore, given the majority of Baltimore’s constituents are African-American. The president pushed back, affirming Democrats play the “race card” instead of confronting the “facts.” Several high-profile Dems and civil rights activists have visited the city amid the controversy.
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Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a violent-crime reduction strategy, partners ATF, DEA, FBI, HSI, the U.S. Marshals Service, the Baltimore Police Department, and the Office of the State’s Attorney for Baltimore City in a join-effort to take down violent crime.
All of those defendants indicted in July are members of violent drug trafficking organizations that have been operating in those Baltimore neighborhoods hardest hit by gun violence, Baltimore’s U.S. Attorney's Office said.
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The attorney’s office is expected to ramp up efforts to surpass last year’s stats. In 2019, the office indicted 215 defendants in 2019 in Baltimore under Project Safe Neighborhoods just past the year’s halfway mark. In 2018, the attorney’s office indicted 246 Baltimore PSN defendants throughout the whole year.
The latest development in the Trump-Cummings feud came Friday when the president tweeted that it was “too bad” Cummings’ own Baltimore home had been robbed earlier that morning. Cummings clarified that an attempted burglar triggered his security system Friday morning but left without entering the home. He also thanked the Baltimore Police Department for their help.