By Brad Segall
NORRISTOWN, Pa. (CBS) — Six Mexican nationals, five of them in the country illegally, are under arrest, accused of running a high-level crystal methamphetamine trafficking ring that targeted the streets of Berks and Montgomery counties.
Officials say the investigation began nearly a year ago when undercover detectives made contact with a suspected drug dealer. Prosecutors say that undercover agents were looking to buy cocaine but dealers were more interested in pushing crystal meth.
Montgomery County DA Risa Ferman says they have not seen a significant demand for meth in this area compared to other drugs, and wanted to make sure the dealers didn’t get a foothold.
“They are pushing this toxic, addictive, dangerous substance into our communities in an effort to drive up supply, to create addicts and create a market for themselves to make money,” she said.
Ferman says their base of operations was Reading, Pa., and authorities believe they have ties to the cartels in Mexico that she believes produce the drugs in labs in that country.
Police seized a loaded handgun, several cell phones, cash, and 1½ pounds of crystal meth with a street value of about $120,000.