FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 18, 2006
Arrested On Meth Charges In Heavener Area Of Oklahoma
18--MUSKOGEE, OKLAHOMA – Sheldon J. Sperling, United
States Attorney for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, announced that
arrests were made this morning, Tuesday, July 18, 2006, in the Heavener,
Oklahoma area of LeFlore County.
arrests were executed for Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine
and twelve State of Oklahoma arrests were made for additional drug
charges,” U.S. Attorney Sperling reported. “The Federal
arrests were made pursuant to a Complaint or preliminary charge,” U.S.
Attorney Sperling reported. “The defendants will be subject to
federal court proceedings in the coming days and weeks.”
“During the arrests today, officers seized quantities of methamphetamine
and numerous firearms,” relayed U.S. Attorney Sperling.
The investigation, which began in January 2005, targeted methamphetamine
traffickers in the Heavener area of LeFlore County,” U.S. Attorney
Sperling continued. “Investigative efforts were led by the District
Attorney’s Drug Task Force for District 16 (LeFlore County), Oklahoma
Bureau of Narcotics, Drug Enforcement Administration, and the United
States Forest Service, with assistance from the LeFlore County Sheriff’s
Office, Poteau Police Department, Pocola Police Department, Heavener
Police Department, Polk County Sheriff’s Office in Polk County,
Arkansas, the 18 West Judicial District Drug Crime Task Force, Polk County,
Arkansas, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation,
Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Immigration & Customs Enforcement.”
“Since January 2005, officers conducted surveillance, made undercover drug
purchases, and used other techniques to gather evidence in this investigation,” commented
U.S. Attorney Sperling. “The success of the investigation would not have
been possible without the professional commitment to the law enforcement mission
displayed by all of these local, state, and federal agencies.”
U.S Attorney Sheldon
Sperling further observed, “This investigation
and resulting arrests reflect the dedication of the law enforcement community
to the Eastern District’s Project Safe Neighborhoods initiative.
The Department of Justice utilizes Project Safe Neighborhoods to target
our most serious drug and gun offenders for federal prosecution, by simultaneously
bringing local, state, and federal authorities to bear upon those who
bring dangerous and unlawful drugs into our communities. Today’s
arrests stand as a striking example of what can be accomplished when
agents at all levels of government work together for the good of their
Farley Ward, District Attorney for LeFlore and Latimer Counties provided
the following details of the investigation. In the fall of 2004, District
16 District Attorney’s Drug Task Force began to investigate methamphetamine
ICE trafficking in LeFlore County. In January 2005, the Task Force was
joined by the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics, U.S. Forest Service, DEA,
Poteau Police Department, Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, and
the Polk County Arkansas Sheriff’s Department. An organized cell
of narcotics traffickers was identified. Undercover agents were used
and large quantities of methamphetamine ICE were purchased in and around
the town of Heavener in LeFlore County. “During the course of the
investigation, officers found that over a quarter of a million dollars
in methamphetamine was being trafficked in LeFlore County in approximately
a month’s time,” stated D.A. Ward.
Methamphetamine is an evil drug that has left a path of destruction in
communities all across the United States. Combating meth production and
trafficking is a top priority for law enforcement, nationwide. This investigation
is a prime example of federal, state, and local agencies working together
to halt those responsible for and profiterring from the spread of this
vicious drug,” noted Mark Woodward, spokesperson for the Oklahoma
Bureau of Narcotics.
Methamphetamine has the ability to destroy entire communities,” commented
Mike Dromgoole, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement
Administration. “The victims are often children, unsuspecting neighbors
and families who live in neighborhoods where meth dealers pedal their
poison. Methamphetamine can strangle a small community such as Heavener.
DEA is proud to be a part of the law enforcement efforts that have helped
to free this area of drug dealers who tried to take this community as
Under the law, all defendants are presumed innocent of all charges until
their guilt is proved beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law,” stated
U. S. Attorney Sperling.
Assistant United States Attorneys Dennis Fries and Rob Wallace represent
the government in this matter.
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