News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 13, 2006

Sixteen Grundy County Residents Indicted By Federal Grand Jury For Offenses Relating To The Manufacture Of Methamphetamine

APR 13--CHATTANOOGA, TN- A federal grand jury sitting in Chattanooga, Tennessee, has returned a 44-count indictment against 16 residents of Grundy County, Tennessee, for offenses related to the manufacture of methamphetamine . Gary Wayne Meeks, 43; Helen Evette Sanders, 38; Ronald Keith Meeks, 44; Mary Meeks,39; Anthony Dewayne King, a/k/a Amazon, 45; Rickye Pack, a/k/a Pacman, 45; Arlissa Campbell, 28; Leigh Ann Pedigo, 33; Todd Mason,34; Raymond Wade Richardson, a/k/a Moody; 31; Ronnie Fults, a/k/a Bug, 30; William Daniel, a/k/a Cobb, 47; David Alvin Huntley, 45; Stephanie Michelle Coffelt,28; Talena Ann Fults, 37; and, Jeffrey Price Smartt, a/k/a TK, 42, are charged with conspiring to make methamphetamine, conspiring to possess pseudoephedrine (a primary ingredient in the making of methamphetamine), intent to manufacture methamphetamine, and various other offenses related to manufacturing methamphetamine. The arrests of the individuals named in the indictment are being effectuated today, according to Harry Sommers, Assistant Special Agent In Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration.

The investigation leading up to this indictment resulted in the seizure of 12 clandestine meth labs at various locations in and around Grundy County. It was made possible, in large part, by the Meth Free Tennessee Act, which requires sellers of pseudoephedrine to maintain records of purchases. These records were used to track the activities of and target these defendants. The Chattanooga office of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Grundy County Sheriff’s Office, Marion County Sheriff’s Office and, South/East Tennessee Methamphetamine Task Force all participated in the investigation.

"The fight against methamphetamine producers and manufacturers has taken a giant step forward due to the efforts and support of Governor Phil Bredesen and the Tennessee Legislature in enacting the Meth Free Tennessee Act," stated Acting United States Attorney James R. "Russ" Dedrick. Dedrick added, "Law enforcement is now able to track down individuals buying precursor components to manufacture methamphetamine with the help and assistance of our businesses who maintain the logs documenting sales of these materials. Specific thanks goes to the great work of the members of the South/East Tennessee Methamphetamine Task Force and Sheriff's John Cupp of Hamilton County, Ronnie Glen Burnett of Marion County, and Brent Myers of Grundy County, for their leadership and support of the task force efforts."

A conviction of conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine carries a sentence of ten years to life in prison. Other charges included in this indictment carry a maximum sentence of twenty years in prison. Members of the public are reminded that indictments contain only charges. A defendant is presumed innocent of the charges and it will be the government’s burden to prove a defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.

For further information please contact James R. Dedrick, Acting United States Attorney, 865-545-4167, Scott Winne, Assistant United States Attorney in the Chattanooga office, 423-752-5140, or Sharry Dedman-Beard, Public Information Officer, 865-545-4167.