LSD and Ecstasy Drug Trafficking Indictments Unsealed
United States Attorney David E. O’Meilia announced that Federal Grand Jury indictments were unsealed last week on July 22, and today, charging six individuals, all out-of-state residents, with participating in a drug trafficking scheme that brought the drugs 3-4 methylenedioxy amphetamine (MDMA) and lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) into northeastern Oklahoma – primarily the Tulsa area. These drugs are known on the street by a variety of names, but more commonly as “ecstasy” and “acid” and sometimes given the innocuous sounding name of “club drugs.”
A five count indictment against Roderick Walker, 30, of Buffalo, New York, accuses him of participating in a conspiracy beginning in the summer of 2003 and continuing through June 2004 to traffick in LSD, and using a telephone to facilitate the drug transactions. If convicted of the drug charge he faces a sentence of 10 years to life imprisonment and a fine of up to $4 million. The telephone count carries up to 4 years imprisonment. Walker is in custody and detained without bond in Buffalo, and expected to be returned to the Northern District of Oklahoma pursuant to federal inter-district transfer procedures.
Charles Ledbetter, 22, of Springfield, Missouri, faces a three count indictment for trafficking in LSD on August 18, September 2, and September 8, 2003. If convicted of the offense, he faces a minimum sentence of 10 years and up to life imprisonment. He surrendered to federal authorities today and made an initial appearance in Tulsa federal court. He was released on bond to face a future trial date.
Anthony May, 18, and Milton Glen Kitchens, III, 19, both of Ozark, Missouri, are charged in a separate indictment with knowingly possessing MDMA on November 25, 2003, with the intent to distribute. The penalties for this offense range up to a possible 20 years imprisonment and a fine of up to $1million. May and Kitchens both surrendered to federal authorities today and made an initial appearance in Tulsa federal court. Both were released on bond to face a future trial date.
Brandy Houston, 20, of Republic, Missouri, is charged in a separate indictment with traveling in interstate commerce between Missouri and Tulsa in September 2003 for the purposes of facilitating the traffickers’ LSD business enterprise. The charge carries a possible penalty of up to 5 years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine. Houston was arrested this morning and made an initial federal court appearance in Springfield, Missouri. She was released on bond and was ordered to appear in Tulsa federal court on August 9.
Additional arrests in the multi-state investigation are expected.
U.S. Attorney O’Meilia stated that these indictments are the result of a ten (10) month Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) undercover investigation spearheaded by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). O’Meilia commended the Special Agents of the Tulsa, Kansas City, Springfield, Missouri, and Buffalo, New York offices of the DEA, as well as the Springfield, Missouri Police Department, for their outstanding and well coordinated investigative efforts. He also thanked the U.S. Attorney’s Offices in Buffalo, New York, and Springfield, Illinois for their assistance. The investigation is part of DEA’s nationwide initiative focusing on the distributors of predatory drugs. U.S. Attorney O’Meilia observed: “Drug traffickers target teens and young adults – particularly those who participate in the “rave” and dance club scenes – as customers for the predatory drugs such as MDMA and LSD” and stressed that, “Consistent with the priorities of the Department of Justice, traffickers of illegal narcotics will be vigorously pursued in the Northern District of Oklahoma.” Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Raley was involved in coordinating the investigation and is handling the prosecution of the case.
A Grand Jury indictment is one method of charging a defendant with alleged violations of federal law which must be proven in a court of law beyond a reasonable doubt to overcome the defendants presumption of innocence.