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Police Bust Large Charlotte Drug and Prostitution Ring

An ongoing investigation by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD) of a drug and prostitution ring resulted in a bust yesterday. As of right now, five suspects are facing felony drug charges stemming from the bust.

The drug and prostitution operation was being run at a motel outside of Charlotte. Law enforcement had been monitoring the location since the beginning of September, after receiving numerous tips from concerned citizens.

The investigation of the alleged drug and prostitution activity was conducted by the CMPD Metro Division's Focus Mission Team (FMT), as well as the Mecklenburg County District Attorney's Office, the Vice and Narcotics Division and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

The investigation led law enforcement officials to believe that rooms in the motel were being used to conduct illegal activity. The drug and prostitution operation was allegedly run by a single leader, with several lower-level participants. The operation was described as an active drug market that ran 24 hours a day. According to police, the operation was distributing more than $25,000 of crack cocaine every week. Other drugs allegedly sold include heroin, ecstasy and marijuana.

Police also believe the operation involved sex crimes, as prostitution activity was observed.

During the investigation, police officers made 17 undercover narcotic purchases from 15 individuals. All 15 of these individuals are now facing drug charges. Also, police made 40 other drug and prostitution related arrests.

Armed with search warrants, the CMPD SWAT team searched four rooms of the motel yesterday during the bust. There have been five arrests for felony drug charges so far. The charges include conspiracy to sell marijuana and cocaine and possession of marijuana and cocaine, among others.

Source: wbtv.com "Numerous arrests made in drug and prostitution sting," 3 Nov. 2010

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