PUERTO RICO – Hundreds of federal and state agents were conducting sweeps of Puerto Rico’s main airport Wednesday in an anti-drug trafficking operation, officials said.
In addition, there were raids in the commonwealth’s capital, San Juan, said Laila Rico, a spokeswoman for the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Puerto Rico Gov. Luis Fortuno told CNN en Español that 42 arrest warrants have been issued, not all of them in Puerto Rico. He said some arrests would be made in the mainland United States.
The raid was taking place at Luis Munoz Marin International Airport, just outside San Juan.
Related indictments, expected to be unsealed Wednesday, deal with the use of the main airport and other airports to traffic drugs, Fortuno said.
The arrests are part of an investigation of two separate cases, the DEA said.
Fortuno said that 200 police and federal agents were participating in the operation.
The governor told WAPA Radio that because of new controls at the island’s ports of entry, it is easier to detect drug trafficking.
Two years ago, authorities arrested three former employees of a private baggage handling company who had worked at an airport in Puerto Rico. Those arrests targeted a drug trafficking ring that used major airlines to smuggle cocaine and heroin to the United States.