Two huge drug busts reported on Columbus' east, south sides, suspects arrested

Two major drug raids, staged just days apart at the end of January, netted more than $600,000 worth of illicit drugs, guns and cash, according to the Franklin County Sheriff's Office.

The raids, carried out in the Southern Orchards and Milo-Grogan neighborhoods, came after a month-long undercover investigation. Sheriff's Major Steven Tucker said Monday that two men had been arrested for possession of all the drugs and were being investigated for possible drug cartel ties.

The first raid, on January 25 on Wilson Avenue near South Champion Avenue, netted more than $100,000 worth of crack cocaine, methamphetamine, black tar heroin and marijuana. $68,000 in cash was also recovered. Tavon Anthony Dewayne Price, 24, was arrested at the scene.

Days later, a special investigation unit raided on Peters Avenue near East 5th Avenue and found 5.5 kilograms of heroin, worth upwards of $500,000 on the street. Four semi-automatic rifles were also taken from the home. Jesus Reveles-Campos, a previously identified illegal immigrant, was handcuffed at that home. Campos has been deported twice in the past, according to Major Tucker.

Both men are charged for possession of the drugs, with more charges pending. Each of them appeared in county court last week.

"The private sector has known for a long time: you set-up distribution in the heart of it all, right here in Columbus," said Tucker. "The drug cartels are no different...and when we seize 5-and-a-half kilograms of heroin, we like to keep the public informed."

On Monday, Milo-Grogan Civic Association chairwoman Liz Gray applauded the arrests and the seizure of the drugs — and said she'd been unaware of this sort of drug activity in her three years living in the neighborhood.

"We have never run into any issues with drug trafficking or crime," Gray said, who lives with her husband and son. "With the opiate crisis that we have right now across the nation, it's not surprising that it would happen here. The cleaner your neighborhood is, the less crime you see there. People will recognize that this is a place that people care about."

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