Duluth police arrest six in large cocaine bust

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Duluth police think they've crippled a crack cocaine network they say was moving a large amount of the drug in Duluth in recent months.

Police say they've arrested six individuals following an investigation led by the Lake Superior Drug and Gang Task Force, which set up drug buys by informants.

Five have been charged in St. Louis County District Court, while a sixth is held on a warrant from Cook County, Illinois.

With the arrests police confiscated five handguns and ammunition, crack cocaine, powder cocaine, marijuana and prescription drugs, in addition to several vehicles and a large amount of currency.

Drug and Gang Task Force Commander Lt. Steve Stracek said it's a major drug case in Duluth.

"It was a lot of work -- a lot of defendants -- but at the same time we're still continuing to target other problems and other types of drugs," he said.

Stracek said an investigation followed reports that a lot of crack cocaine was being sold in Duluth.

He said the arrests should send a message to dealers in the Duluth area.

"A lot of times the associates of these drug dealers or the drug dealers themselves are involved in other crimes -- including robberies, and assaults and those types of things," he said. "So, I think we'll make a huge impact on the number of violent crimes reported here."

One suspect accounted for three guns and almost $20,000 in cash.

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