One of the largest drug enforcement operations in Mohave County’s history ended this week, when law enforcement officials from multiple local, state and federal agencies made dozens arrests in what’s being called an international heroin and methamphetamine smuggling enterprise.

On Nov. 10, detectives of the Mohave Area General Narcotics Enforcement Team, ended a two year long investigation into a drug trafficking organization operating in Mohave County. The extensive investigation, “Operation King Crimson,” started in February 2019 by MAGNET investigators with the assistance of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the U.S Drug Enforcement Administration.

At the start of the investigation detectives and federal agents learned of two drug trafficking organizations operating in the Kingman area. One of those organizations was allegedly led by Austreberto Acoltzi-Bautista, 48, of Kingman. The second organization was allegedly operated by Carlos Ochoa-Quinones, 30, of Kingman.

The investigation into Bautista’s organization revealed that he allegedly obtained large quantities of methamphetamine and heroin that was ordered from Mexico and then delivered into Southern California cities. Bautista would allegedly retrieve the drugs and distribute them in Mohave County and Las Vegas. Investigators say Bautista was found to have an assistant in the Kingman area, identified as 34-year-old Edwin Sosa-Castro.

Bautista was allegedly found to have 15 of his own drug dealers in Mohave County including Castro and an additional Las Vegas dealer. An additional 11 drug dealers allegedly purchased the drugs from Castro, according to investigators.

Through their investigation, MAGNET detectives worked with state and federal agents to allegedly identify major drug dealers selling methamphetamine and heroin in Kingman, Bullhead City, Dolan Springs and Golden Valley.

The investigation also encompassed the States of California, Nevada, Iowa and the Country of Mexico. Throughout the investigation Investigators seized 120 pounds of methamphetamine, two pounds of heroin, 38 guns of which 5 were identified as stolen. Investigators also seized about $500,000 US Currency and real property. During portions of the investigation, officials say MAGNET received support from the Arizona Department of Public Safety and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

 “This is the largest operation of its kind to date, removing a large volume of illicit drugs from our county,” said Mohave County Sheriff Doug Schuster this week. “A criminal enterprise that flooded our county with its poison has been completely eradicated. I am extremely proud of the excellent work by our MAGNET Detectives and their exhaustive efforts to bring this investigation to a successful end. We had tremendous assistance from our law enforcement partners and I truly appreciate the hard work and cooperation of all agencies involved.”

Dozens of alleged participants in the criminal enterprises have been taken into custody throughout the two-year investigation. According to investigators, Quinones remains at large, and a warrant has been issued for his arrest.

“Mexican drug cartels flood our country with dangerous drugs. These drugs destroy lives and tear at the very fabric of our communities. Today, the people of Mohave County and the greater Las Vegas area are safer due to the efforts of MAGNET, DEA and our partners,” said DEA Special Agent Cheri Oz. “DEA will continue to fight to keep these poisons from devastating our families, friends and loved ones.”

Prosecution of “Operation King Crimson” is a joint effort by the Arizona Attorney General’s office and the Mohave County Attorney’s Office. According to investigators, several members of the organizations remained at large as of this week.

“Meth and heroin are vicious drugs that destroy lives, devastate our communities, and compromise the public’s safety,” said Homeland Security Special Agent Scott Brown. “We will continue to work closely with its law enforcement partners to bring narcotic traffickers to justice.”

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(18) comments

tomgarven

Thank you ladies and gentlemen of our law enforcement agencies for getting these killer drugs off our streets. Hopefully after all of your hard work these criminals will receive their just punishment.

1502

Americans are at fault. If we continue to buy the drugs they will come. This story has been going on for years. Trump said he was going to solve this issue. Well I guess he was too busy at his carnival rallies.

oneadam12

Great job here by all those involved to arrest the drug dealers, keep up the good work, be safe out there..

Too old for this

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simon1dog

Evidently this "gummy" fascination has something to do with Shishkabob's false teeth.

BigBob

Who is this "Shishkabob" person that only you hear, do you see him as well? Oh, of course you do because now you know he has false teeth. What an amazingly damaged brain you have that fills in such details. Those gummies are not your friend.

simon1dog

Under a Biden / Harris administration these goons would be soon released with medical and financial benefits. Mere "Victims of Society."

BigBob

No, actually unlike under Typhoid Donnie's do nothing system where these kinds of "goons" are just a part of Big Pharma, the Biden/Harris administration would see to it they are punished and incarcerated right alongside Typhoid Donnie and his crime family.

RESIST

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“Your”welcome

Lmao! My sympathies go out to those that got caught! I’m sure the proceeds would have been able to feed those in need! Social workers are in our future! Forget 911 and the police for protection! I’m certain these educated socialist will fix all that is wrong!

RESIST

You don't constantly need to affirm "Your" stupidity! We get it!

“Your”welcome

“Resist!” Please! That just wasn’t nice I’m a “Demorat” just like you! Now C’mon my little Hispanic/Native American buddy let’s get to defunding our police and allowing 15 million illegals the rights to our freedoms! Let’s knock down the boarders and finish off this once great country!

BigBob

"Your" (sic) - Which "educated socialist" would that be? And why am I not surprised you offer sympathies to drug runners?

RESIST

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23merkaba

Lil' Bobby's diverse borderless utopia fantasy collapses once again

BigBob

Who is this "Lil' Bobby" you are incessantly whining about and why don't we see his comments? Oh, that's right, he's just another of those gummy induced little voices occupying your massively empty head.

BigBob

So that explains why our pathetic county votes Republican!

Ilovebuyonegetonefree

Why don't you leave this republican town! Go to california where your people have turned it into a mess! Why not be near your people who think just like you! instead of whining about republicans all the time.!! Oh wait I know why your here...Because its nice here unlike dem city's Lol.

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