‘Major’ federal operation results in dozens of arrests in West Memphis, Crittenden County

WEST MEMPHIS, Ark. — Hundreds of federal agents swarmed West Memphis Tuesday morning and arrested dozens of people.

They said they are connected to a dangerous drug and weapons ring.

Thirty-eight people are now behind bars while authorities look for 12 more on the run as of Tuesday afternoon.

The majority of those arrested were convicted felons with violent histories, authorities said.

"Drug and gun crime has been overrunning the entire Arkansas Delta for some time, and the epidemic has hit West Memphis and Crittenden County hard," said Patrick Harris, the Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

Beginning in 2015, undercover agents made more than 50 controlled purchases of meth, cocaine, crack and illegal weapons. They said they also did wire tapping and surveillance.

The U.S. Postal Inspectors said they also intercepted more than six pounds of meth in the mail from the defendants.

Authorities said the men and women arrested were put on a bus and taken to Little Rock where they will face a judge Thursday morning.