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"Operation: Paradise City" Nets 52 Arrests in Extensive Lee County Drug Sweep

The Lee County Sheriff's Office has made significant strides in law enforcement, announcing the apprehension of 52 individuals as part of a comprehensive investigation spanning several months.

Dubbed "Operation: Paradise City," the countywide initiative was laser-focused on curbing drug-related activities, targeting both dealers and traffickers operating within the region.

Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno disclosed that out of the 52 apprehended individuals, 22 are currently facing charges related to trafficking offenses. Notably, one suspect attempted to evade authorities by fleeing the state but was promptly apprehended by the DeSoto County Sheriff's Office.

Richard Lee Campbell, a key figure in "Operation: Paradise City," was apprehended by DCSO following a tip-off from a vigilant citizen and information provided by SWFL Crime Stoppers. Campbell, who was allegedly en route to Arcadia with intentions to proceed to Georgia, was intercepted in connection with the ongoing investigation.

During the execution of search warrants, a substantial quantity of illegal substances was confiscated, including nearly two kilograms of cocaine, a kilogram each of fentanyl and fentanyl pills, a kilogram of MDMA, over 13 pounds of methamphetamine, and a staggering 81 pounds of marijuana. Additionally, law enforcement seized 24 firearms throughout the course of the investigation.

Residents residing along Maple Street in Lehigh Acres bore witness to a law enforcement operation as armed deputies executed a raid on a residence, which Sheriff Marceno revealed was part of an undercover operation. Further seizures of firearms and significant quantities of narcotics were made during this operation.

Sheriff Marceno underscored the seriousness of the charges faced by many of the apprehended individuals, noting that a significant portion are repeat offenders with potential ties to violent crimes. He emphasized the collaboration with federal partners in prosecuting such cases, highlighting the substantially stricter sentencing guidelines applicable in federal court.

Anticipating further developments, Sheriff Marceno indicated the likelihood of additional arrests in the days to come as the investigation continues to unfold.

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