February 19, 2015
Contact: SA Timothy Desmond
Phone Number: (617) 557-2100
Richford Vermont Man Sentenced In Cross-Border Marijuana Trafficking Conspiracy
(RICHFORD, Vt. - Michael J. Ferguson, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont has stated that Jeffrey Donna, 39, of Richford, Vermont has been sentenced to prison for his role in a crossborder marijuana trafficking conspiracy. In August 2014, Donna was convicted of conspiracy to distribute marijuana. As part of his sentence, Donna has forfeited a second home in Florida, a second Florida property, a Richford, Vermont rental property, a Harley Davidson motorcycle, a Polaris ATV, a Cadillac Escalade, twenty-two guns, and $135,000 in drug money. Donna will begin serving his 32 month sentence in March.
Donna, and his co-conspirator, Roy “Opie” McAllister II, have been described as kingpins in a marijuana trafficking business that began in the mid-2000s and continued until the two were arrested on May 29, 2013. The two defendants were responsible for bringing bulk quantities of marijuana across the Canadian border into northern Vermont for several years.
According to the evidence of record, Donna and McAllister moved between 1,000 and 3,000 kilograms of marijuana as part of the conspiracy. The marijuana trafficking has been characterized as a for-profit enterprise, in which Donna and McAllister made lavish expenditures using drug proceeds.
McAllister, 39, of Montgomery, Vermont is facing sentencing on March 19, 2015.
McAllister has been convicted of conspiracy to distribute marijuana and filing false tax returns in 2010 and 2011. To date, he has been ordered to forfeit a home heating oil delivery truck used by
McAllister Fuels, 115 Troy Street, Montgomery, Vermont, which the government alleged was bought with McAllister’s drug proceeds. He has also been ordered to forfeit 34 guns, two Harley
Davidson motorcycles, a Polaris ATV, a Chevy Tahoe, and a Ford F-150 Harley Davidson edition pick-up truck. Forfeiture against his residence, 2404 Regan Road, Montgomery,
Vermont, jewelry, and a GMC Yukon are pending.
As part of the marijuana trafficking conspiracy, the two defendants were assisted by Jesse Soule, 48, also of Montgomery, Vermont. Soule was convicted in January 2014 of his role in the marijuana trafficking conspiracy. According to court records, Soule participated in the conspiracy by storing bulk marijuana on his farm. Soule is currently in jail serving a 13 month sentence. He has forfeited $250,000 in drug proceeds to the government and a Polaris ATV.
Kirt Westcom, 48, of Fairfield, Vermont, also has been convicted of conspiracy to distribute marijuana. He received bulk marijuana from Donna and McAllister at his farm on 262 Egypt Road, Fairfield, Vermont for several years. Westcom is currently in jail serving a 24 month sentence. Westcom has forfeited $135,000 to the government, as well as a Harley Davidson motorcycle, and a Ford F-350 pick-up truck.
Seven other individuals have pleaded guilty to federal crimes arising out of this drug enforcement action in Franklin County, Vermont. They are Jeffrey Baisley, 32, of Richford, Vermont, Jeffrey Tatro, Jr., 28, of Richford, Vermont, Robert Patterson, 55, of Richford, Vermont, Jonathan Palermo, 29, of Essex, Vermont, and Benjamin Pratt, 32, of Colchester, Vermont, who all have been convicted of conspiracy to distribute marijuana. Eric Jette, 32, of Enosburg, Vermont and Johnthan Aldrich, 34, of Richford, Vermont also have been convicted of federal drug charges.
As part of this federal law enforcement action, over $600,000 in cash, three pieces of real property, more than 70 guns, and seventeen vehicles have been forfeited.
The United States Attorney’s Office would like to thank the United States Border Patrol, the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, and the Drug Enforcement Administration for their work in conducting this investigation. This investigation was also assisted by the United States Internal Revenue Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
The United States was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Heather Ross. Jeffrey Donna was represented by John Pacht, Hoff Curtis. Roy McAllister II is represented by Peter Langrock, Langrock Sperry & Wool. Jesse Soule was represented by Paul Volk, Blodgett, Watts, Volk & Sussman. Kirt Westcom was represented by Katina Francis Ready, Esq.