Illinois authorities are trying to make a dent in the Metro East drug trade.  Over the last three months, investigators with the Illinois State Police have been conducting "Operation Wild, Wild East," targeting the St. Clair County communities of Alorton, Brooklyn, Washington Park and East St. Louis.  

Fifty-eight people have been hit with drug charges so far, and some of them also face weapons violations.  Thirty six were arrested on Tuesday and Wednesday and more arrests are expected.   St. Clair County State's Attorney Brendan Kelly says those arrested aren't just small-time drug pushers but those who are actively destroying their communities.

Kelly says they targeted those communities because in most cases the police departments in those towns are understaffed and overwhelmed with calls and simply don't respond in the most serious cases.  

(Copyright WBGZ Radio/