CARUTHERSVILLE - Law officers working together across county and state lines have arrested four persons and seized approximately $470,000 along with drugs and weapons.
The investigation began approximately six months ago, according to a news release issued by the Pemiscot County Sheriff's Department, when two agents of the Bootheel Drug Task Force had a sawed-off shotgun pulled on them during a drug investigation. An investigation by the ATF and the Task Force lead to numerous search warrants being served in Pemiscot and Dunklin counties and the discovery of a large methamphetamine trafficking ring operating in Missouri and Arkansas, said Pemiscot County Sheriff Tommy Greenwell.
In the past two weeks more search warrants were served in Pemiscot and Dunklin counties. Also methamphetamine was purchased from dealers in Arkansas.
Officers have since recovered six pounds of methamphetamine, $130,000 in cash, 10 weapons and $25,000 in various other property.
Arrested and charged in Dunklin County were Dennis Wheeler, 51, of Beaufort and Ron C. Jefferson, 36, of Blytheville, Ark. Both are charged with trafficking methamphetamine. Wheeler's bond is set at $250,000 cash only while Jefferson's bond is $500,000 cash only.
Also arrested in Dunklin County was Ward Harden, 48, of Kennett. He is charged with trafficking and has been released on bond.
Manuel Castaneda, 30, of Blytheville was arrested and charged in Blytheville. He is being held on charges of trafficking meth with no bond allowed.
Greenwell said more arrests are expected in the case.
Involved in the investigation were officers from the Bootheel Drug Task Force, Pemiscot County Sheriff's Office, Dunklin County Sheriff's Office, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; Caruthersville, Kennett and Hayti Police Departments; agents of the Second Judicial Task Force of Arkansas; Mississippi County, Ark., Sheriff's Department and Blytheville Police.