Authorities arrest nine on suspicion of involvement in drug trafficking ring
The suspects are accused of belonging to the largest drug distribution channel in the Urals--a group which the Ministry of Internal Affairs began investigating in November, RIA Novosti reports.
Packages containing synthetic drugs with a total estimated street value of $40 million were recovered at each of the homes of the nine suspects throughout Yekaterinburg, Chelyabinsk, Ufa, Nizhnevartovsk and Novosibirsk.
Officials allege that one of the suspects, a 19 year-old resident of the Moscow region, is a high-ranking leader of the drug cartel.
"A criminal case on charges of organizing a criminal group and participate in it," a statement from the Interior Ministry said, according to RIA Novosti. "All nine suspects by the court into custody."
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