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Rural Drug Task Forces in Arizona

NCJ Number
J Farmer; R Holt
Date Published
21 pages
This report profiles two rural-area drug law enforcement programs in Arizona: The Border Alliance Group Drug Task Force in Cochise County and the Mohave Area General Narcotics Enforcement Team in Mohave County.
Cochise County is sparsely populated and provides an ideal environment for the illegal importation of drugs from Mexico. The response has been the establishment of the Border Area Group Narcotics Task Force (BAG), which was begun in April 1987 by the Cochise County Sheriff's Office. The BAG Task Force is currently composed of 11 full-time personnel, including eight sworn officers, one intelligence analyst, and two support personnel. The task force is formally organized, with a governing board of the chief executives of the participating agencies. The task force has been effective over the years. Since July 1, 1990, it has arrested 362 drug offenders and has seized 2,793 pounds of cocaine and 18,930 pounds of marijuana. The success of the task force, according to the task force supervisor, is due to the strong cooperative ties among law enforcement agencies at all levels. In Mohave County, major land routes, coupled with the vast remote, limited access areas and many remote air strips, make it an ideal location for clandestine drug laboratories and distribution or shipping centers that serve California, Nevada, Utah, and the rest of Arizona. The Mohave Area General Narcotics Enforcement Team (MAGNET) is divided into three squads, which have only drug enforcement duties. MAGNET's 12 enforcement officers rely on covert surveillance, undercover operations, and informants to develop their cases. The task force has had particular success in attacking illicit methamphetamine labs. Appended program data