NW Ark. methamphetamine ring broken with arrests

BENTONVILLE (AP) - Eleven people are charged and more than 20 pounds of methamphetamine were seized by authorities in northwest Arkansas in the break-up of what officials say is a major drug ring.

U.S. Attorney Connor Eldridge announced the arrests on Friday and said the defendants facing numerous methamphetamine-related charges.

Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent In Charge William Bryant says the investigation dismantled a major drug trafficking operation in Benton and Washington counties.

Agents seized six pounds of meth this week in the culmination of an investigation that started last year. The first arrest came in December, when Arturo Vaca-Raya of Springdale was caught with 15 pounds of methamphetamine. Vaca-Raya was sentenced last month to 40 years in prison.

Seven defendants are charged in federal court and four face state charges.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.