The four-year investigation into trafficking in north Georgia and eastern Tennessee involved federal, state and local agencies.
"This investigation is a perfect example of what agencies can accomplish when they work together as a team," said Cherokee County Sheriff Roger Garrison, whose agency is a part of the Cherokee County Multi-Agency Narcotics Squad. "This case shows the fight against drugs is not just a local or regional issue. It is a fight that law enforcement as a whole must join together to accomplish a common goal."
The investigation has already resulted in the conviction of 12 people in Tennessee for the distribution of more than 100 of meth.
Sixteen more arrests were made over the last week including Terry Pruitt, 53, of Waleska. The other suspects arrested are from Acworth, Marietta and multiple cities in Tennessee.
CMANS Commander Kimberly A. Williams said the suspects living in Cobb did business in Cherokee, and vice versa. Some also moved back and forth between the two counties over the course of the investigation, she added.
They all face federal charges of conspiring to distribute and possess with intent to distribute, in excess of 500 grams of methamphetamine.
If convicted, the defendants face a minimum of 10 years imprisonment and a maximum sentence of life in prison.
More suspects are in custody, but have not yet been named, and additional arrests are pending, officials said.