For six months, an FBI-New Mexico State Police task force infiltrated a high-crime area of Southeast Albuquerque to try to reclaim the troubled neighborhood from habitual violent offenders, including armed robbers and drug dealers who had set up shop in apartments, extended-stay motels and even outside a drug rehabilitation facility.
According to federal search warrant affidavits made public this week, the investigation included more than 60 undercover drug buys and a 5 a.m. search that found a 12-year-old girl alone in an alleged drug dealer’s house.
Last Friday, dozens of law enforcement agents descended on the streets of Albuquerque’s International District for a predawn takedown. The raids of more than a dozen alleged “neighborhood drug houses” harkened back to the area’s old moniker, the War Zone.
Federal and state officials as of Wednesday night hadn’t responded to Journal requests for details about the crackdown.