65 Narcotics Traffickers Indicted in Tennessee
(Nashville, TN) - March 17, 2006- Over the past two week period, law enforcement officers have arrested 18 out of 23 federally charged narcotics traffickers who were indicted March 8, 2006 by a federal grand jury in Nashville, Tennessee, while state authorities are in the process of arresting an additional 42 individuals on State narcotics charges, announced Jim Vines, United States Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee; Harry S. Sommers, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Nashville District Office; Terry Ash, Wilson County Sheriff; and Billy Weeks, Commissioner of Public Safety, Lebanon, Tennessee.
The federal investigation began in the Summer of 2005. According to the indictment, the defendants conspired to acquire cocaine from Texas for sale in Tennessee in order to generate significant monetary profits in the form of illegal narcotics proceeds. The defendants various roles and tasks during the course of the conspiracy. Some acquired and/or assisted in the acquisition of cocaine in Texas for transportation to the Middle District of Tennessee. Others organized and/or assisted in the transportation of the cocaine from Texas to the Middle District of Tennessee. Others distributed cocaine and cocaine base in Lebanon and Nashville, Tennessee. The investigation resulted in the seizure of six and three quarter kilograms of cocaine, one pound of marijuana, seven firearms, narcotics paraphernalia and more than $310,000 in drug proceeds.
As part of the above investigation, Saul Aguirre, Vicente Aguirre, Roderick Marks and Keith Dwuane Watkins were arrested federally on March 7, 2005. Their arrests resulted in the seizure of approximately four and a half kilograms of cocaine, one pound of marijuana, two firearms, narcotics paraphernalia and more than $277,000. They were later charged in an indictment with one count of possession with the intent to distribute over 500 grams of cocaine in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Section 841(a)(1).
19 defendants are charged in a related federal indictment with one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute over 5 kilograms of cocaine and over 50 grams of cocaine base in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Section 846. Fifteen of these defendants were arrested this morning - Kenneth Jones a/k/a Wonderbread, DeCarlos Adams a/k/a Montez, Kim Williams, Lamont Hastings, Eric Brooks, Shawntel Robertson, Terry Bates, Ethel Lou Brooks a/k/a Brook, Shakira Lynette Steverson a/k/a Pooh, James Robertson a/k/a Rico, Carlos Gene Seay a/k/a German a/k/a Chop a/k/a Big 50, James Ray Huddleston, Deborah Jean Glenn, Jason Majors, and Harry Jenkins. The remaining 4 defendants - Roberto Manier a/k/a Boo, Tim Dickerson, Marisol Navarro, Javier Navarro-Vergara, have not yet been found. The charge these 19 defendants are facing carries a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 10 years, a maximum term of life imprisonment, and a fine of up to $4,000,000.
The arrest of the 15 defendants early this morning was a result of a coordinated takedown involving the federal, state and local law enforcement agencies described below and the United States Marshal’s Service. Agents and investigators also seized firearms, narcotics proceeds, drug records, quantities of cocaine and cocaine base. Today’s arrests coincided with the takedown of investigations by the LPD and WCS that resulted in the indictment of forty-two other individuals on narcotics trafficking related charges by a state grand jury in Lebanon, Tennessee.
The investigation and indictments send a clear message that the United States Attorney’s Office, the DEA and its federal, state and local law enforcement partners will target narcotics traffickers that threaten our communities, their local supply networks and the organizations responsible for transporting large quantities of narcotics into the Middle District of Tennessee.
The investigation was initiated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (“DEA”), the Wilson County Sheriff’s Department (“WCS”) and the Lebanon Police Department (“LPD”). The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Department, the Franklin Police Department, the Murfreesboro Police Department, the 20th Judicial Drug Task Force, the 18th Judicial Drug Task Force and the Sumner County Sheriff’s Department assisted in the investigation.
An indictment merely represents an accusation, and the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless they are proven guilty.