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Authorities dismantle alleged cocaine ring with ties to Mexican cartel

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • The drug ring is thought to have transported more than 20 kilograms of cocaine weekly
  • The cocaine originated in Juarez, Mexico, and landed in Denver, officials say
  • The 35 people indicted were part of a "large scale" organization, officials say
  • Cocaine
  • Juarez Cartel
  • Denver

(CNN) -- Federal authorities dismantled a large-scale cocaine trafficking organization in Denver, Colorado, with the indictment of 35 people, officials said Monday.

Six remained fugitives Monday, but the others were in custody, authorities said.

The 35 people, some of them gang members, had ties to a drug cartel in Juarez, Mexico, authorities said. It is believed that they were responsible for shipping more than 20 kilograms of cocaine every week across the border from that Mexican city to El Paso, Texas, and then to Colorado, authorities said.

During their investigation, law officers seized 53 kilograms of cocaine, 35 pounds of marijuana, and more than $650,000 in cash, including $500,000 from one defendant's home and $122,000 from a car stopped in downtown Denver, authorities said.

Authorities also confiscated almost 60 pounds of cocaine from two traffic stops in Pueblo, Colorado. Law officers seized 15 vehicles and nine firearms, authorities said.

The arrests were made by 150 law enforcement officers representing 20 agencies, said U.S. Attorney John F. Walsh in Denver.