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Scoring a major victory

Federal, West Virginia and Huntington law enforcement officials made a major breakthrough in the fight against the region’s drug problem this week.

On Tuesday, it was announced that more than 200 officers from a dozen agencies had taken part in a series of raids in West Virginia and Michigan, part of “Operation Saigon Sunset.”

More than 90 individuals suspected of being involved for years in a multi-state drug raid were targeted. By mid Tuesday, 30 had been arrested and large quantities of drugs were seized, including 760 grams of heroin, 450 grams of fentanyl and 167 grams of cocaine had been seized.

This is a positive development for Lawrence County as Huntington has served as a pipeline for many of the drugs entering our region. According to Ironton Police Capt. Joe Ross, 90 percent of the heroin and fentanyl reaching Ironton is coming via Huntington.

Mike Stuart, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of West Virginia said the amount of fentanyl seized in the raids was enough to kill 250,000 people.

Curbing the flow of drugs will require cooperation on all fronts and the work done by all agencies involved in the raids should serve as an example for future operations.

Given the epidemic of deaths from drug overdoses in our region, there is no doubt that lives have been saved as a result of these actions in West Virginia.

We thank all involved for their dedication to ending this problem and scoring this major victory in the fight.