More than a dozen suspects were charged this week with supplying and selling powder and crack cocaine throughout the Chicago area, particularly on the city's South and West sides.
Police on Wednesday seized 10 guns, six vehicles, about $100,000 and various drugs valued at $500,000 during multiple busts led by the Chicago Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Sixteen suspects were arrested and charged with narcotics possession or distribution conspiracy in an 11-count criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court. Three suspects were already were in state custody.
The charges carry a mandatory minimum of five years and a maximum of 40 years in prison, as well as a maximum fine of $5 million.
Supt. Garry McCarthy said Thursday the arrests stem from a nine-month investigation of alleged drug-trafficking.
"This type of behavior is representative of the criminal mindset perpetuating violence in our city, and we simply are not going to tolerate it," McCarthy said.
DEA Jack Riley said the arrests will prevent shootings and homicides in Chicago.
"We always ask ourselves during cases like this, 'Does this make a difference in narcotic trafficking in the city?'" Riley said. "You bet it does."
In a separate investigation, several other suspects were arrested for selling drugs on the street. Several gang members in the 11th district were arrested, some for selling drugs beneath CPD cameras.
The suspects remain in federal custody pending detention hearings scheduled next week.