Office of Justice Programs (OJP)

17th Judicial Circuit Drug Task Force

BJA Program(s): Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program
State(s): AL

Jurisdiction(s): Sumter Green and Marengo Counties (17th Judicial Circuit)

Grantee Agency: Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA)
Subgrantee Agency: Marengo County Commission

Grant Amount/Year(s): FY 2013/65,475.92; FY 2014/127,235.91

About the Program:

The 17th Judicial Circuit Drug Task Force is a multi-jurisdictional task force operating in Greene, Marengo, and Sumter Counties in west Alabama. The mission of the 17th Circuit Drug Task Force is to reduce the amount of illegal narcotics on the 17th circuit by aggressively investigating and prosecuting the individuals and groups involved in the practice of manufacturing, distributing, and trafficking illegal drugs. The stated goals of the DTF are as follows:

  1. Ongoing drug enforcement operations through cooperative efforts through Alabama Beverage Control (ABC), Alabama Bureau of Investigation (ABI), DEA, and Homeland Security.
  2. Continue to work all levels of dealers and informants to gather intelligence on upper level drug dealers.
  3. Continue to develop extensive database of informants and intelligence through communications with Confidential Informants and local law enforcement.
  4. Increase patrols on I-20/I-59 and Highway 80.
  5. Continued cooperation with DEA.

The stated objectives of the DTF are as follows:

  1. Increase cases involving all levels of drug dealers by 10%.
  2. Indentify and disrupt drug trafficking organizations (DTOs).
  3. Assist local law enforcement agencies on drug cases.
  4. Increase seizures by 20%.
  5. Target drug organizations involved in gang activities in Green and Sumter counties.
  6.  Expand drug awareness program in local schools.

Program Successes/Effect on the Community:

Accomplishment from April 1 through June 30, 2014:

  1. The Drug Task Force Interdiction Unit seized $174,000 from drug traffickers.
  2. Agent Autery also worked a joint venture with an agency in Winfield, Texas in which 5 pounds of heroin was recovered due to Agent Autery's expertise.
  3. Agent Autery also assisted an operation in McAllen, Texas in which 120 pounds of marijuana was recovered.
  4. DTF and ABC agents conducted a joint operation in Marengo & Sumter counties in which 14 arrests were made and 36.6 grams of crack were seized, 10 grams of marijuana, 89.5 Xanax, and 1 gun.
  5. Executed search warrants in Marengo, Sumter, Perry, and Dallas Counties.
  6. Worked with National Guard Air Unit and did surveillance of local drug dealers and also looked for marijuana grows.

Accomplishment from January 1 through March 30, 2014: The DTF Interdiction Unit seized 67 pounds on I-59/20 in Greene County. 43 kilos of meth were seized on information from one of their Confidential Informants. U.S. Customs and Border Patrol made the seizure when the trafficker crossed in into the U.S. from Mexico. The trafficker was bringing drugs to the Birmingham area. The DTF arrested a major drug trafficker in Greene County in which they did a reversal on 10 kilos of cocaine. The trafficker is the head of a major drug distribution network in Greene and Marengo Counties. The DTF seized $262,120.00. 

Accomplishment from October 1 through December 31 2013:

  1. The Drug Task Force Interdiction Unit has successfully seized $984,970.00 in cash and $194,000 in property from drug trafficking organizations this quarter.
  2. They continue to make progress in their ongoing investigations with DEA in Greene and Sumter Counties. Ongoing undercover operation with ABI Marengo and Sumter Counties.

Learn More:
To learn more about the program, please contact:
Brian Forster
Law Enforcement Programs Supervisor
Email: brian.forster@adeca.alabama.gov
Phone: 334-353-4265

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