In the early 80s, nearly 90% of America’s cocaine supply came from Colombia. The Colombian government began a crackdown toward the middle of the decade, and had significant success. But in early July 1985, a series of American drug raids revealed that cocaine trafficking had changed tactics: not only distribution, but production of the drug, had shifted to the US.
DEA agents revealed laboratories in rural Long Island, as well as in Gordonsville, Virginia, and they collected a haul of drugs and drug processing chemicals that included 147 pounds of cocaine and 100 pounds of coca leaves.
Named by an informant as prime organizers in the operation, Luis Herrera and Edwin Franco Hernandez were arraigned on July 11 on charges of conspiracy to import and sell cocaine base.