ICE, Homeland Security arrest 9 as part of Tucson-based drug trafficking ring

Posted at 7:31 AM, Jul 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-19 13:05:26-04

Nine people are now in custody after a multi-agency investigation into a Tucson-based drug trafficking ring that was suspected of smuggling significant amounts of drugs, including cocaine. 

U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement says the arrests are the latest developments in the three-year long investigation on the drug trafficking ring that ran between Arizona, Nevada and Illinois. 

The Tucson residents taken into custody include the alleged ringleader 44-year-old Rene Marcos Vera. Authorities say 35-year-old Raquel Ann Stansberry, 50-year-old Cesar Diaz German, 58-year-old Rosella Maria DeLeon, 38-year-old Richard Andrew Leon, 22-year-old Rene Marcos Vera II were all taken into custody in Tucson as well. 

Tawney Waner, a 31-year-old resident of Las Vegas and 41-year-old Joseph Sorce were both arrested in Chicago. 

Authorities seized more than 85 pounds of cocaine, eight properties estimated to be worth more than $2.5 million, 17 vehicles, four bank accounts and more than $145,000.

The suspects face multiple charges including money laundering, possessing, manufacturing, and selling illegal drugs, as well as identification theft. 

Investigators from the Chicago field offices of the FBI, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Homeland Security Investigations, ICE, the Arizona Department of Public Safety, Chicago Police, and the Pima County Sheriff's Department all aided in the investigation.