12 Indicted in Pasco Burglary Ring
APR 01 -- TAMPA - Mark R. Trouville, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration, Miami Field Division, United States Attorney A. Brian Albritton, and Pasco County Sheriff Bob White, announce the unsealing today of an indictment charging 12 men with conspiring to commit burglaries involving interstate transportation of stolen vehicles, construction machinery and expensive lawn care equipment, as well as with the burglaries of several pharmacies and possession with intent to distribute numerous controlled substances. Six of the defendants were already in custody on state charges. Local and federal law enforcement officers began arresting the other six defendants this morning. Those arrested today will appear this afternoon in federal court in Tampa before United States Magistrate Judge Thomas G. Wilson.
According to the indictment, on July 27, 2009, Sheriff White stopped a suspicious truck towing several large lawnmowers. Subsequent investigation revealed a large-scale burglary ring led by Mickey Lemons that involved thefts of commercial lawn and construction equipment from local businesses as well as numerous burglaries of pharmacies in Hillsborough, Pasco, and Hernando counties, Florida and in Sylvania and Ashville, Alabama. The pharmacy burglaries involved thefts of large quantities of oxycodone, morphine, methadone, amphetamine, and hydrocodone.
This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, the Tampa Police Department, the Tarpon Springs Police Department, the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office, the Georgia Department of Transportation, the Ashville (AL) Police Department, and the Sylvania (AL) Police Department.
An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed a violation of the federal criminal laws, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until proven guilty.
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