St. Louis federal authorities arrested 24 people in connection with a St. Louis marijuana smuggling ring that stretched from Arizona to St. Louis, Missouri. David Ingram Henderson, of Maryland Heights, Missouri, was considered the ringleader of the drug operation that, since 2006, has been transporting marijuana across the country.
The operation also included growing marijuana in several houses in St. Louis. It is alleged that over 1,000 kilograms of marijuana were brought into St. Louis as a result of this drug operation. The suspects allegedly transported the money back to Arizona by car, plane and bus, and laundered the money through banks and casinos. For example, some members of this organization went to Ameristar Casino in St. Charles, Missouri, and inserted $13,660 in slot machines and immediately printed out vouchers, which they cashed in with the cashier. They never actually played the slot machines. This drug operation also involved flying to Amsterdam to obtain marijuana seeds.
Officials announced that the 24 indicted in St. Louis were part of a much larger national drug bust. Federal officials have arrested more than 2,200 people, and seized $154 million in cash and over 74 tons of drugs nationwide.
In an odd twist to this story, Harry Sommers, head of the St. Louis office of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), stated that several of those who were arrested are rappers, and their musical talents can be found on YouTube, in a video making fun of police officers and law enforcement.