Investigators question 15 Army special operators in ongoing drug probe

Maya Alleruzzo

FORT BRAGG, N.C. — More than a dozen U.S. Army Special Operations Command soldiers were apprehended and questioned last week as part of an investigation alleging drug involvement, officials said.

All 15 soldiers assigned under USASOC were questioned and released to their command, while two of the 15 were “cleared of any wrongdoing,” said Lt. Col. Michael Burns, a spokesman for the U.S. Army Special Operations Command.

The U.S. Army Special Operations Command is the higher headquarters for the Army’s Special Forces soldiers, Army special operation forces and soldiers in support units.

“(The Army Criminal Investigation Division’s) investigation is ongoing, and it would be inappropriate to discuss the status of their investigation,” Burns said. “All soldiers have the right to due process, including the presumption of innocence under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

No arrests or charges have been filed at this time.

The soldiers were apprehended by the Department of the Army Criminal Investigation Division “as part of its ongoing efforts to identify and mitigate the use of illegal narcotics,” CID officials wrote in a statement.

“This is an ongoing investigation; no further details will be released at this time,” CID officials said.

USASOC is cooperating with the Army Criminal Investigation Division, Burns said.

USASOC maintains a strict policy use against illegal drugs, which are “not acceptable” nor tolerated, he said.

“The overwhelming majority of Army Special Operations soldiers live the (special operation forces) values every day,” Burns said. “The use of illegal drugs or any other illegal activity goes directly against these values and does not reflect the behavior we demand from every soldier in our formation.”

Leaders are taking measures at every level to ensure the health and welfare of its soldiers and to reduce harmful behaviors in its formations, he said.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article was published as part of a content-sharing agreement between Army Times and The Fayetteville (N.C.) Observer.