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Drug bust nets 22 arrests in western North Dakota

DICKINSON, N.D. (AP) -- Law enforcement officials say 22 people have been arrested in a drug bust on the North Dakota oil patch. Officials say the conspiracy involved heroin, methamphetamine, crack cocaine and cocaine.

A handful of defendants are from California. The operation dubbed ``Operation Pipe Cleaner'' was the result of a joint investigation by the FBI and North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation. Fourteen of the defendants are charged in federal court and eight in Stark County. Special agent in charge Chris Warrener of the FBI's Minneapolis office says the ``safety and well-being of the people of western North Dakota remains a priority'' with federal, state and local officials.