News Release
July 02, 2008
Contact: S/A Rich Isaacson
Number: (313) 234-4310

Eight Eastern Ohio Residents Indicted in Large Cocaine Conspiracy
Two Year DEA Youngstown Investigation stretched to San Antonio, Texas

JUL 02 -- William J. Edwards, Acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, and Anthony Marotta, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Columbus Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), announced that a federal grand jury sitting in Cleveland, Ohio, returned indictments charging the following individuals with violations of federal narcotics laws:

1. Patrick K. Ellington, age 42, of Atlanta, Georgia;
2. Mizell E. Ewing III, age 26, of Cleveland, Ohio;
3. Sean C. Ewing, age 21, of Youngstown, Ohio;
4. Samantha Brown, age 29, of Youngstown, Ohio;
5. Kendall Smith, age 35, of Youngstown, Ohio;
6. Keith Smith, age 35, of Youngstown, Ohio;
7. Ricki Hill, age 53, of Youngstown, Ohio;
8. Bill A. Hall, age 28, of Youngstown, Ohio.

On July 1, 2008, Mizell Ewing, Sean Ewing, Samantha Brown, Kendall Smith, Keith Smith, Ricki Hill, and Bill Hall were arrested and are scheduled to be arraigned before Magistrate Judge James Gallas in Akron, Ohio. Patrick Ellington was arrested in Atlanta, Georgia and will appear in federal court in the Northern District of Ohio at a later date.

According to Acting United States Attorney Edwards, the investigation, code named “Operation Yard Dog,” occurred over a two-year period and included the seizure of multiple kilogram quantities of cocaine in the Youngstown, Ohio, area. The DEA Youngstown Resident Office investigation revealed a drug organization based in Cleveland and Youngstown operated by Albert Scott Parker, age 38, of Cleveland, OH, and Benjamin Parker, age 40, of Youngstown, OH.

The Parker drug trafficking organization received multiple kilogram quantities of cocaine from sources in San Antonio, Texas. To date, the investigation has resulted in the indictment of 14 individuals.

On October 28, 2006, DEA agents in Youngstown and Cleveland, along with the Ohio Highway Patrol, seized approximately 40 kilograms of cocaine from a vehicle on Interstate 71 in Medina County, Ohio. On November 3, 2006, DEA agents in San Antonio, Texas, working in conjunction with the DEA in Youngstown, seized approximately 41 kilograms of cocaine in San Antonio, Texas. On November 16, 2006, DEA agents in Youngstown utilized an undercover agent and seized approximately 32 kilograms of cocaine from a truck stop in Austintown, Ohio. All of this cocaine was destined for the Parker drug trafficking organization.

On August 24, 2007, Gil Manzano, age 28, and Alberto Farias, age 31, both of Houston, Texas, were arrested and approximately 10 kilograms of cocaine, two kilograms of marijuana and two firearms were seized. Farias and Manzano were supplying the drugs to members of the Parker drug trafficking organization in Northeast Ohio. Farias and Manzano were indicted by a federal grand jury in Cleveland in September 2007, and both have subsequently pled guilty to drug trafficking offenses. On April 24, 2008, Farias was sentenced in the NDOH to 180 months incarceration. On April 21, 2008, Manzano was sentenced in the NDOH to 70 months incarceration.

This investigation was conducted jointly with members of the DEA Youngstown Task Force, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Ohio State Highway Patrol, and the Ohio HIDTA. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Linda H. Barr.

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If convicted, the defendants’ sentences will be determined by the Court after review of factors unique to this case, including the defendants’ prior criminal records, if any, the defendants’ roles in the offenses and the unique characteristics of the violations. In all cases, the sentences will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases they will be less than the maximum.