DEA shows off largest heroin bust in Georgia history; ‘prolific’ dealer tied to Mexican cartel arrested, officials say

ATLANTA — Just a week after Channel 2′s Mark Winne reported on the DEA’s biggest heroin bust in Georgia history, we now know the details on what happened.

The DEA, FBI and U.S Attorney’s office held a news conference Wednesday afternoon to show and explain what they found: Roughly 170 kilos of heroin, 41 guns and nearly $1 million in cash were recovered at two Atlanta locations.

Agents said their main suspect, Antonio Dashawn Daniels was working for a Mexican drug cartel and was supplying the drugs to three area neighborhoods, including the Bluff.

According to DEA Agent in Charge Robert Murphy, the investigation actually started in Mexico where the DEA along with the FBI and other partners were able to seize some $7 million in cash. They were able to use the information from that raid to track things back to Atlanta.

Agents also announced they found about 10 kilos of cocaine in the two raids and found a ledger showing Daniels at one point received nearly 1,000 kilos of cocaine during a 14 month time period.

“Basically we took off a ruthless violent group who is responsible for selling poison throughout our streets in the city of Atlanta,” Murphy said.

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Agents laid out their case against Daniels, explaining how they believe he became the primary connection between Atlanta and one of the Mexico’s most dangerous cartels, Cartel Jalisco New Generation (CJNG).

“This investigation has tied all the way up to the highest level of cartel activities in Mexico”, said B.J. Pak, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia.

Murphy also said Daniels had been previously arrested in a gun case and that agents and investigators believe in the six years since his supervised release ended, Daniels has become one of the most prolific heroin and cocaine dealers in the Northern District of Georgia.

“This can permeate through any community in metro Atlanta throughout the state of Georgia and beyond,” said FBI agent Chris Hacker.

Attorney Dwight Thomas says he’s representing Daniels in this case and anticipates he’ll plead not guilty Friday at his preliminary hearing Friday. Thomas told Winne on the phone, once the hearing is over, he’ll begin to assess all aspects of the case.