In a joint operation by law enforcement, 26 people have been identified as taking part in a methamphetamine distribution syndicate involving narcotics trafficking and distribution in Texarkana and Miller County.

In a joint statement issued from the Texarkana Arkansas Police Department, Police Chief Bob Harrison and Miller County Sheriff Ron Stovall said this case is an example of how law enforcement can work together in making a significant impact in the community.

"When law enforcement officers from all levels of government dedicate their efforts towards a common goal, a greater disruption in the distribution and use of illicit narcotics can be achieved.”

The Bi-State Narcotics Task Force, comprised of detectives who are employed by Texarkana Arkansas Police Department and the Miller County Sheriff's Office, working with the assistance of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the United States Marshall Service, and working in conjunction with the Arkansas 8th Judicial South Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, and the United States Attorney’s Office, Western District of Arkansas, have spent the last eight months investigating a large scale methamphetamine distribution syndicate involving narcotics trafficking and distribution in the areas of Texarkana and Miller County, Ark.

As a result of the investigation, 26 people were identified as taking part in the syndicate’s activities, and officials within the investigation secured arrest warrants for these participants. Some of the defendants in this case will be prosecuted for violating state law while others with be charged with violating federal criminal offenses. Still yet, others may be charged with criminal violations at both levels.

The law enforcement operations occurring today were based on the collaborative efforts of all agencies represented in the investigation and culminated in the apprehension of the individuals believed to have taken part in the drug syndicate’s activities.

Based upon the specific locations of each individual arrest, law enforcement officials representing the Texarkana Arkansas Police Department, Miller County Sheriff’s Office the Texarkana Texas Police Department, the Bowie County Sheriff’s Office, the Arkansas State Police, the Texas Department of Public Safety, the FBI, and the U.S. Marshall’s Service all participated in the arrests. Eighteen people were arrested today with outstanding warrants for the others remaining.

Criminal charges in this case range from Delivery of a Controlled Substance to weapons charges. Some charges will be enhanced as the sale of controlled substances was located near schools, churches, and city parks.

“The Miller County Prosecuting Attorney's Office is proud to be a part of this investigation and the undercover work of the officers. This is an excellent example of how monies seized in illegal drug activities can be used to fund investigations like this in furtherance of the fight against drugs for the betterment of our community," said Stephanie Potter Black, the Prosecuting Attorney for the Arkansas 8th Judicial South District, which includes Miller County.

Diane Upchurch, Special Agent in Charge with the FBI in Little Rock, said today's arrests are the effective coordination with law enforcement entities who partner together to disrupt and dismantle drug networks that threaten our neighborhoods.

"Along with the Bi-State Narcotics Task Force, the Texarkana Police Department, the Miller County Sheriff’s Office, the Miller County Prosecuting Office, the Arkansas State Police, and the United States Attorney’s Office – Western District, we are focused on stopping the movement and sale of drugs.”