Columbia Man Indicted for Fentanyl Trafficking
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A Columbia, Mo., man was indicted by a federal grand jury today for possessing fentanyl that he intended to distribute in Springfield, Mo.
Michael E. Hunt, Jr., 41, was charged in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield with one count of possessing fentanyl with the intent to distribute. Today’s indictment replaces a federal criminal complaint that was filed on June 13, 2022, which charged the same offense.
According to an affidavit filed in support of the original criminal complaint, law enforcement officers learned that Hunt was planning to transport fentanyl from Columbia to Springfield. Hunt was driving a black Jeep Renegade southbound on Highway 5 on June 12, 2022, when a Laclede County, Mo., sheriff’s deputy conducted a traffic stop for a moving violation. A police service dog alerted to the presence of drugs in the Jeep, at which time Hunt locked the vehicle and refused to give officers the keys.
After the Jeep was unlocked by a local tow company, officers searched the vehicle and found a black gym bag on the front passenger seat that contained approximately 300 grams of fentanyl, which is consistent with distribution and not merely personal use.
The charge contained in this indictment is simply an accusation, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charge must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.
This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Laclede County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Missouri State Highway Patrol and the Springfield, Mo., Police Department.