Operation “Dirty Water” was a huge success for a small-town Florida Sheriff. While the feds are all working the same big case of Donald Trump colluding with Russians to invade the Capitol Building, the Sheriff’s office took a whole bunch of Mexican meth off the streets of Polk County, Florida. Miami used to be the cocaine capitol, as the delivery point for all the Colombian flake. These days it’s the Juarez and Sinaloa drug cartels trying to set up “a central Florida hub for distribution.”
Operation nets more than expected
Deputies in the Sheriffs office of Polk County, Florida had no idea what they would uncover from a single clue. Operation “Dirty Water” started with “the interception of an envelope filled with Xanax pills.”
By the time it was over, it resulted in “the seizure of the largest volume of methamphetamine in the history” of their office. The envelope led to the Juárez Cartel. “One of the cartels is not very happy today because their folks got caught with a whole lotta drugs,” Sheriff Grady Judd gloats.
There were exactly 2,544 Xanax pills in the envelope shipped from Canada which they snagged back in January. The address on the package belonged to 37-year-old Amber Cayson of Winter Haven. Deputies went undercover to deliver her mail that day. As soon as she signed for the delivery they slapped her in cuffs. She sang like a canary to give them the next link in the chain for their widening operation.
“She was arrested and the investigation pushed forward.” We “arrested the people. They were willing to send it here,” Judd explains. “They wanted to establish a conduit into the county and our undercover detectives were their new operation in Central Florida. Surprise, we’re the cops!”
After the police beat her up with a hose for a while she told them all about her associate, “Lil B.” He wasn’t hard to track down because 37-year-old Brian Staton was sitting in a cell at the United States Federal Penitentiary in Atlanta.
The operation led the Sheriffs office to Georgia. It turned out that Lil B “was the mastermind behind arranging the sale and delivery of 26 pounds of meth in Polk County.” “This is not a horrible fairy tale. It’s the truth,” Sheriff Judd insists.
A suitcase full of meth
Undercover detectives learned just how easy it is to have a “suitcase full of 12 clear storage bags” full of methamphetamine delivered to a hotel room in Lakeland. You just need to know who to call. In this case, it was Jennifer Meers, age 43.
She had recently “been released from prison after serving a 10-year sentence for drug trafficking.” Her federal probation officer isn’t happy she was tied up in the operation. According to Sheriff Judd, “She’s a bad girl. Now she’s an arrested girl.”
They didn’t bust her right away though. “A second undercover drug exchange was set up, but this time in Georgia.” On the second load, “Meers left 35 pounds of meth in her truck across the street from the landscaping company she worked for.”
As soon as they picked up the drugs the operation picked her up too. “The drugs were secured and Meers was later arrested during a traffic stop where authorities say she admitted to being paid $500 a kilo by Stanton for deliveries.”
She turned out to be a gold mine. “Information uncovered during her arrest also led investigators to the location of methamphetamine conversion labs, additional arrests, the discovery of more than a dozen firearms, and the seizure of 1,416 pounds of crystallized and liquid meth.”
They also busted a “cockfighting ring run by Isidoro Palacios, 59, who was arrested.” That was purely by accident. By the end of the operation they hauled in “more than $54 million worth of illegal drugs.”