Deputies Seize Nearly 700 Pounds of Marijuana from 3 U.S. Soldiers
PHOENIX - Three Army soldiers were among those arrested during Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio's most recent crime sweep.
In all 51 suspects were arrested, including 37 illegal aliens.
Deputies arrested the three soldiers on drug, money laundering and conspiracy charges.
The soldiers, Dwayne Campbell, Llewellyn Stamoulis and Romaine May were discovered to have 680 pounds of marijuana and $10,000 in cash during a traffic stop in north Phoenix. They were wearing military clothing and identified themselves with U.S. Government issued military identification. The driver of that vehicle was also charged with driving on a suspended driver's license.
"It is during the enforcement of minor traffic violations like cracked windshields and broken tail lights that deputies come across offenders of more serious crimes like drug smugglers, human smugglers, and perhaps even murderers" Sheriff Arpaio says.
The Sheriff also stated that despite criticism of his suppression operations from the Obama administration, he will continue to conduct crime sweeps and enforce all aspects of illegal immigration laws.
COMMENT: For those that don't know Sheriff Arapio may be the most controversial law enforcement figure in the US- billing himself as "Americas toughest sheriff". He has re-instituted chain gangs, housed prisoners in a tent next to the main jail (temperatures in Phoenix often exceed 100F - reports of temperatures ~150F inside the tents have made the press. The jail has a radio station that plays Sinatra, Opera, and Classical music throughout the prison. He also installed webcams in the processing facilities allowing the public to view those being processed from arrests.
He has been accused on a number of occasions of being highly racist, and has drawn publicity for stunts like parading "illegal aliens" through the city streets- chained and shackled.