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Portland police say they've uncovered a drug ring run by teenagers

Drugs and guns
Portland Police Department
Drugs and guns confiscated by Portland police.

Following a shooting incident by suspects in multiple vehicles last month, Portland police say they have uncovered a drug trafficking ring in Cumberland County.

They say searches on homes in Portland, Gray and New Gloucester involving over 100 law enforcement officials have resulted in the seizure of six guns, 400 grams of cocaine and tens of thousands of dollars. Interim Assistant Chief Robert Martin said at a press conference Tuesday that the operation was run by teenagers ranging in age from 16 to 19.

"The sophistication of this drug trafficking network and the level of violence that we have connected with this group of youthful individuals is troubling," he said. "This lump of drugs and the number of guns, you know, we don't see that usually in adults. I mean, this is really an anomaly, for these kids to be this organized, have this much money."

Police indicate that at least three 17-year-olds have been taken into custody. Prosecutors have already charged one of them reckless conduct with a dangerous weapon.

Nick Song is Maine Public's inaugural Emerging Voices Fellowship Reporter.

Originally from Southern California, Nick got his start in radio when he served as the programming director for his high school's radio station. He graduated with a degree in Journalism and History from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University -- where he was Co-News Director for WNUR 89.3 FM, the campus station.