Dozens arrested in Duplin Co. drug sting

KENANSVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – A large undercover drug sting across several counties brought in dozens of arrests Thursday.

Deputies and officers brought in suspects arrested on various drug charges to the Duplin County Jail. It’s part of Operation This Is Just The Beginning.

Multiple law enforcement agencies across Duplin and Wayne counties worked together undercover to buy drugs from suspects and the operation yielded thousands of dollars worth of drugs.

In phase one, deputies arrested 40 suspects, with numerous charges including trafficking, selling and manufacturing drugs.

“These folks are spewing poison in communities and neighborhoods and anytime we can take somebody off the street who’s doing that and maybe prevent them from selling to a young person or getting someone addicted, that’s the goal,” explained Sheriff Blake Wallace, Duplin County.

Of the arrests, 25 percent came from the town of Warsaw where Warsaw police Chief Eric Southerland says cocaine is a major problem.

“Drugs, it breeds crime,” said Southerland. “If they can’t afford to purchase it, they’re going to out and commit criminal activity. Larcenies, break-ins, thefts — they go hand in hand.”

Deputies are still bringing in suspects, and more arrests are expected. 12 individuals remain wanted for dealing drugs.

The operation is expected to have three more parts over the coming year, and if you have information about drug dealers in your community you are asked to call your local law enforcement office.

The following have been charged so far in the operation:

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