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TUCSON, Ariz. -- A year-long investigation by federal authorities has resulted in the arrest of 18 people connected to a cocaine trafficking organization operating in Cochise County including a sheriff's detention officer.

The investigation targeted drug trafficking activity in the Sierra Vista and Bisbee areas, but suspects from Tucson also were arrested.

Drug Enforcement Administration officials say traffickers would import cocaine from Mexico, transport the drug to Tucson and then distribute the cocaine to street level dealers and end users throughout Bisbee and Sierra Vista.

Cochise County Sheriff's officials announced Tuesday that detention officer Mario Serrano has already resigned after his arrest in the drug case. He had been with the Sheriff's Office since December 2001.

Authorities said Wednesday that three suspects remain at large.

Associated Press,

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