A joint investigation between the Gwinnett County District Attorney’s Office and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration yielded nearly $1 million in cash and several million dollars more worth of heroin, methamphetamine and cocaine during a drug raid on Thursday.

The bust, which began at a tire shop in south Fulton County on Thursday, led DEA agents to a Lawrenceville home, said Robert Murphy, special agent in charge for the Atlanta DEA field division.

“We received information (Thursday) that a load of drugs was coming in,” Murphy said. “Agents set up on surveillance, they saw some activity at a tire shop where it was delivered and there was a U-Haul that was left that had 250 pounds of crystal ice methamphetamine in it.

“There was another vehicle that left with them and that person stopped and led us to the address in Lawrenceville, where we did a search warrant at the house.”

In the home, agents found a fake circuit breaker panel, which, when removed, led to a hole, which, in turn, led to a false room.

“That’s where the money — $850,000 in cash – 25 kilos of cocaine, 7 kilos of heroin all laced with fentanyl and two firearms (were found),” Murphy said. “Four Mexicans were arrested, one of which had been reported as an aggravated felon who snuck back into the country. There’s ICE holds on them, and here we are.”

Though Murphy could not say what organization the drugs came from, he said it’s part of a “very large cartel.”

“We know who they are, we just don’t want to (say) who they are,” he said. “But we’re getting ready to take them down.”

Murphy said that Thursday’s seizure was not the only bust DEA agents have conducted on this cartel.

“It’s been all over Gwinnett County,” he said. “We developed information from a tip, and then we went from there.”

Murphy said part of the planned take down includes other locations and other people in Gwinnett, though he could not release any further information.

“That’s $5 million in drugs on the table and nearly $1 million in cash (from Thursday’s raid),” Murphy said. “There’s going to be some explaining to do.”

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Crime Reporter

Isabel is a crime and health reporter for the Gwinnett Daily Post. She graduated from Emory University in 2016 with a B.A. in international studies. She is originally from the Boston area.

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