Cocaine Supplier, Codefendant Sentenced to Federal Prison in Richmond County Narcotics Conspiracy
All eight defendants convicted in Operation Snowfall
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- The man who supplied cocaine for a major Richmond County drug trafficking operation, and another man who admitted to a firearms offense related to the operation, have been sentenced to federal prison.
Mario Hubbard, 45, of Smyrna, Ga., was sentenced to 151 months in prison, fined $35,000 and ordered to serve four years of supervised release after completion of his prison term after pleading guilty to Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and To Distribute Cocaine and Marijuana, and Conspiracy to Commit Money Laundering, said David H. Estes, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. Hubbard also forfeited his Smyrna home, with an estimated value of more than $600,000, that was alleged to have been purchased with drug trafficking proceeds.
U.S. District Court Chief Judge J. Randal Hall also sentenced one of Hubbard’s co-defendants, Timothy Dale Reid, 53, of Augusta, to 78 months in prison after pleading guilty to Possession of a Stolen Firearm. Reid also was fined $1,500 and ordered to serve three years of supervised release after completion of his prison term.
There is no parole in the federal system.
The sentences are the culmination of the 2019 indictment in USA v. Freeman, et. al., a two-year Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) investigation initiated by the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration into cocaine distribution throughout the greater Augusta area. The investigation identified Hubbard as supplying cocaine through Atlanta-area connections to Terrance Quain Freeman, 50, of Augusta, who served as a leader of the conspiracy that funneled kilos of cocaine and crack cocaine into the community for distribution by local dealers.
During the investigation of Operation Snowfall – so named because of the large quantities of powder cocaine involved – DEA agents and sheriff’s office investigators seized more than $500,000 in cash, more than two kilos of cocaine, 32 grams of crack cocaine, and more than 9 pounds of marijuana, along with eight firearms.
Freeman is serving 100 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and To Distribute Cocaine and Marijuana. Four other defendants are serving sentences of up to 151 months in federal prison, while Quieaton Freeman, 23, of Augusta, awaits sentencing after pleading guilty to Possession of Firearms by an Illegal Drug User. He is a son of Terrance Freeman and the last remaining federal defendant in the operation. More than a dozen other defendants also have been prosecuted on state charges in the investigation.
“Drug trafficking breeds violence, and the traffickers who engage in this dangerous lifestyle often protect their ill-gotten gains with dangerous weapons – as was the case in this investigation,” said the Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) Atlanta Field Division Robert J. Murphy. “DEA and the entire law enforcement community are committed to making the citizens of these affected communities in Georgia and elsewhere safer by removing dangerous criminals from their neighborhoods.”
“This operation is an outstanding example of the results of the collaborative law enforcement effort from local, state, and federal agencies,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Estes. “We particularly commend the work of investigators from Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations for their assistance in seizing the ill-gotten gains of this significant drug trafficking enterprise.”
“Collaboration with our agency partners and utilizing all of our specialized talents were the keys to success in this investigation,” said IRS Criminal Investigation Assistant Special Agent in Charge Demetrius Hardeman. “This Operation is a win in the war against drugs and its financing. We are committed to continue using our financial expertise to bring justice to those who harm our communities.”
Sheriff Richard Roundtree directed the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Division to neutralize and dismantle local drug organizations, but to also target the organization’s source of supply. “In this case, RCSO and its federal partners reduced the supply lines from Atlanta to Augusta-Richmond County,” said Sheriff Roundtree. “Some of the defendants indicted in this case are career drug traffickers. Their removal from our community will enhance Augusta’s safety and security.”
The case was investigated under the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF). OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach.
The investigation was conducted by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office, the Dekalb County HIDTA Task Force, the Greene County Sheriff’s Office, and the Georgia National Guard Counterdrug Task Force, and prosecuted for the United States by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Patricia G. Rhodes and Hank Syms.
The DEA encourages parents, along with their children, to educate themselves about the dangers of legal and illegal drugs by visiting DEA’s interactive websites at www.JustThinkTwice.com, www.GetSmartAboutDrugs.com, www.CampusDrugPrevention.gov, and www.dea.gov . Also follow DEA Atlanta via Twitter at @DEAATLANTADiv