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Two Separate Investigations Result in Significant Sentences for Drug Dealers in Cedar Rapids

(ST. LOUIS) - Matthew Barden, Associate Special Agent in Charge of the DEA St. Louis Division, announces substantial prison sentences as the result of two large-scale drug investigations, led by the DEA office in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. In one case, Ryan Buchheim, 48, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, received a 20-year prison sentence for possession with intent to distribute crystal methamphetamine. The other case netted prison sentences of up to10 years behind bars for Devonte Jenkins, 26, Gary Krueger, 71, and Naiqondia Spates, 33 all of Waterloo, Iowa, after being convicted of conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine.

“The sentencings handed down on these cases put into perspective just how dangerous drug traffickers are to our communities,” Agent in Charge Barden said, “Drug dealers care little about anyone but themselves. Their actions terrorize neighborhoods, poison our streets, and cause a great deal of harm to the community. Thanks to the efforts of our law enforcement partners, who worked tirelessly on these cases, we have rid the streets of some very bad people. Rest assured; our job is far from over, we will continue to investigate and arrest dealers and traffickers who try to profit from these dangerous drugs.”

In Buchheim’s case, what started as a routine traffic stop soon developed into a large-scale drug investigation. Buchheim, who had a prior felony conviction for distributing cocaine and possession of pseudoephedrine to be used in the manufacture of methamphetamine, was pulled over for a traffic stop in March 2017. During that stop, a narcotic K9 searched Bucheim’s car, which led to the seizure of approximately one pound of 99% pure crystal meth. A subsequent investigation led to Buchheim admitting his intent to sell the crystal meth in the Cedar Rapids area. Due to his prior felony conviction, Buchheim received a prison sentence of 240 months (20 years) and was remanded into the custody of the United States Marshals Service pending transfer to the Bureau of Prisons. The DEA worked this case in conjunction with the Cedar Rapids Police Department.

Jenkins’, Kruger’s, and Spates’ were indicted and convicted in conjunction with Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) case “Aces High.” Evidence presented at trial to convict these individuals included court authorized wire taps revealing the trios attempts to buy and sell crack cocaine. Additionally, all three men were involved in controlled purchase of crack cocaine from them by law enforcement.

Although Spates’ was only sentenced to 91 months in prison, he was found to be a leader or organizer of the conspiracy and possessed firearms during the conspiracy. Spates’ criminal history includes convictions for delivery of a controlled substance and domestic assault. Kruger and Jenkins’ both received 120 months sentences for their roles in the conspiracy, with Jenkins’ criminal history detailing a preferred judgement for possession of crack cocaine while Kruger’s criminal history included convictions of delivering cocaine base and pimping.

This case was worked in conjunction with the DEA, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), the Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement, the Tri-County Drug Enforcement Task Force, the Waterloo, Iowa, Police Department, the Blackhawk County, Iowa, Sheriff’s Office, the Cedar Falls, Iowa, Police Department, the Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Police Department, the Iowa City Police Department, the Linn County, Iowa, Sheriff’s Office, and the Iowa State Patrol.

The United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Iowa indicted and prosecuted both cases.


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