NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A two-year joint investigation in North Charleston led to the arrests of multiple people with numerous guns and drugs seized.
During a press conference on Wednesday, law enforcement officials announced 21 suspects had been arrested Wednesday during a round up on state and federal drug and firearm trafficking charges.
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The investigation involved nearly 200 undercover operations which resulted in the purchase of 58 firearms, over three and a half pounds of cocaine and crack cocaine, 80 grams of meth and 41 grams of heroin.
Authorities say they are searching for 21 other suspects in connection to the investigation.
"We got 21 today. We got 20 something to go. But you can run, but you can't hide forever. We will get you," said Mayor Keith Summey.
NCPD officials say the investigation began in October 2014 when the ATF Charlotte Field Division began an undercover investigation targeting gang members and associates of the "O Block Money Gang" or "OBMG."
According to authorities, other armed narcotics traffickers were also targeted who were involved in a variety of crimes including home invasions, shootings and other violent crimes.
City officials said there were 32 homicides in the city last year with the majority of them being drug related.
"A lot of times citizens may not physically see the ongoing work that these officers do in keeping them safe but I want them to know that we are working hard daily to continue to improve the quality of life in our communities and city," Summey said.
According to the NCPD officials, the operation was a joint law enforcement effort in the City of North Charleston, its surrounding communities and included agents from ATF and the Office of Homeland Security Investigations along with officers and deputies with NCPD, Charleston police and the Charleston County Sheriff's Office.
"Reducing violent crime and keeping our communities safe for residents is our number one priority," said Assistant Police Chief Reggie Burgess."We are so grateful for the collaborative efforts of our local, state and federal law enforcement partners and their commitment to tackling the issues of gang violence, illegal firearms and criminal activities."
"We're trying to get our communities where our people who live there feel safe again," Summey said.
Officers were seen rounding up dozens of suspects in what was being called a major operation.
The arrests began early Wednesday morning.
The Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms is involved in a partnership with North Charleston Police, the Charleston County Sheriff's Office and several other local, state and federal agencies.
North Charleston Police Department spokesman Spencer Pryor said the following people were arrested on state charges:
X Zavion Codrey
Ten others were arrested on federal charges, he said.