New Orleans police arrest 51 people on drug, prostitution charges during undercover stings
Complaints from neighbors about illegal activity spurred the action in police districts across the city, Serpas said.
"People try to destroy the quality of life in neighborhoods" with drug dealing and other illegal activities, Serpas said. "We're not going stand for it. We're going to be aggressive."
Serpas also said that many of those arrested are no strangers to law enforcement.
"People are often repeat offenders," Serpas said as he thumbed through a stack of papers several inches thick that he said were the rap sheets for 11 of the 51 people arrested. He said if all those arrested had been included the stack would have been thicker than a ream of paper.
Commander Michael Harrison, who leads the NOPD's Specialized Investigations Division, said the undercover stings, with their audio and video recordings, are a better way to convict offenders.
"It is the best evidence we can present for criminal prosecution," he said.
In addition to the 51 people already arrested, two other suspects who bought or sold drugs during the stings remain at large. Police said information about the suspects will be released later Wednesday.
Reported by Times-Picayune