News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 21, 2006

28 Central Ohioans Targeted in "Operation Black Gold Rush"
Columbus is one of 14 cities involved in nationwide effort

ASAC Anthony Marotta addresses the media.

ASAC Anthony Marotta addresses the media.

AUG 21-- COLUMBUS – A federal grand jury here has indicted 28 people in two separate indictments for their roles in a black tar heroin trafficking operation that spans the United States and Mexico .

Teams of agents, deputies and officers from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, Ohio State Highway Patrol, the Columbus Division of Police, the Madison County Sheriff’s Office and Genoa Township Police executed seven search warrants in Columbus this morning and began arresting those named in the indictments. The actions are part of Operation Black Gold Rush, a nationwide sweep of individuals involved in heroin trafficking. Columbus is one of 14 cities involved.

Gregory G. Lockhart, United States Attorney, Southern District of Ohio; Robert L. Corso, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration, Detroit Field Division; Franklin County Sheriff Jim Karnes; Superintendent Paul McClellan, Ohio State Highway Patrol, Madison County Sheriff James Sabin and Genoa Township Police Chief Robert Taylor announced the indictments, which were returned earlier this month and unsealed today as the defendants were arrested.

The indictments are the result of an investigation started by the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office in November, 2005. The investigation expanded to include agencies in the Columbus DEA Task Force.

Other agencies participating in the investigation and today’s arrests include the U.S. Marshals Service, and sheriff’s deputies from Crawford, Richland, Union and Marion counties.

“One indictment charges 18 people. The other charges ten,” Lockhart said. “Think of the groups as ‘franchise’ operations that distributed heroin throughout central Ohio.” Lockhart noted that all 28 are charged with conspiracy to distribute heroin, a charge that carries a punishment of up to 20 years imprisonment.

“The local investigation began with a street problem identified by the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and grew to join a multi-jurisdictional investigation with ties reaching into Mexico,” Corso said. “This is a prime example of cooperation and collaboration between local, state and federal agencies. By combining resources and intelligence, DEA and our law enforcement partners worked to help dismantle an entire drug trafficking organization.”

“We’ve successfully ‘swatted’ a black gold rush,” Sheriff Karnes said. “Today’s operation brought together some of the finest law enforcement SWAT teams in the region to work cooperatively and finalize our participation in this.”

According to the DEA, the type of heroin known as Black Tar comes from Mexico, and is popular in parts of the United States. Black Tar is either sticky or hard and looks like roofing tar. It's usually dissolved and mixed with other liquids before being injected into the user's vein. The DEA also lists black tar heroin as a “predominant” drug in southern Ohio, based on reports by local law enforcement agencies.

A list of those indicted and the charges against them is attached. Still photos of Operation Black Gold Rush drug, gun, and money seizures will be posted on the DEA website www.dea.gov along with the national press release.

Search warrants were executed at the following locations in Columbus: 3480 Big Run South, 5577 Millwheel Court, 5670 Ironwood Court, 4591 Bay Run Drive, 1553 Bay Run Circle, 120 Tarragon Way, and 3459 Sullivant Avenue.

Lockhart commended the cooperative investigation of the agents, deputies and officers involved, as well as Assistant U.S. Attorneys Tim Prichard and Robyn Hahnert, who are prosecuting the case.

An indictment is merely an accusation. All defendants are presumed innocent. It is the government’s burden to prove the individuals guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Operation Black Gold Rush
Central Ohio defendants

Case number: 2:06cr189
Defendant name, Date of Birth, address

Count
1
Count
2
Count 3
Count
4
Count 5
Count 6
Count 7
Count 8

Jesus Dejesus Cedano Lopez , aka Pepe, aka Chuy, aka Nieves, aka Oscar Garcia Lopez
DOB: unk Address: 4591 Bay Rum Dr. Columbus

X
 
X
 
X
 
X
 

John Doe #1, aka Goyo, aka Carlos
DOB unk Address: Columbus

X
 
X
 
X
 
X
 
John Doe #2, aka Pepe
DOB unk Address: Columbus
X
 
X
 
X
 
X
 
Jose Lopez Diaz, aka Tony, aka Juan
DOB: 7/22/76 Address: Columbus
X
             
Cesar Cristano Curiel Ramirez, aka Marigua
DOB unk Address: Columbus
X
 
X
 
X
 
X
 
David Vargas, aka Matacuas
DOB: 7/20/82 Address: 1719 Falling Leaf Ct., Columbus
X
             
Bryan Castaneda Ramirez, aka Manuel
DOB: 5/10/82 Address:120 Tarragon Way, Columbus
X
             
Emmanuel Arturo Aguayo Hernandez, aka Arturo
DOB: unk Address: Columbus
X
             
Frederic Tapia Gil
DOB: 3/2/76 Address: 120 Tarragon Way, Columbus
X
             
Ramon Arteaga Gonzalez, aka Adan
DOB: 12/12/74 Address: 54 Meek, Columbus
X
             
John Doe #3, aka Guiro, aka Felipe
X
           
X
Kristi Harris
DOB: 12/19/62 Address: Hawaii
X
             
Ernesto Villela Miranda
DOB: 11/21/79 Address: Columbus
X
X
           
Israel Blanco
DOB: unk Address:
X
   
X
 
X
   
Joel Taylor, aka Alan
DOB: 11/21/80 Address: Columbus
X
             
Scarlett Lewis, aka Mamacita
DOB: 4/12/80 Address:
X
             
Derrick Eugene Darling, aka Eugene
DOB: 1/21/80 Address: Columbus
X
             
Nathan Lewis
DOB: 2/15/77 Address: Columbus
X
             

Count 1: Conspiracy (0-20 years)[$1million fine, 3 yrs sup. rel, $100]
Count 2: Distribution of more than 100 grams of heroin ( 5-40 years)[$2 million fine, 4 yrs sup rel, $100]
Count 3: Possess with intent to distribute more than 100 grams of heroin (5-40 years)
Count 4: Distribution of more than 100 grams of heroin (5-40 years)
Count 5: Possess with intent to distribute more than 100 grams of heroin (5-40 years)
Count 6: Distribution of more than 100 grams of heroin (5-40 years)
Count 7: Possess with intent to distribute more than 100 grams of heroin (5-40 years)
Count 8: Possess with intent to distribute more than 100 grams of heroin (5-40 years)

Case number 2:06cr183
Defendant name, Date of Birth, address
Count 1
Count 2
Isidro Lopez Ruelas aka Javier, aka Pecas
DOB: Unkown Address: Columbus
X
X
John Doe #1 aka Marcos, aka Eddie
DOB: Unkown Address: Columbus
X
X
Martin Luna Sanchez, aka Martin
DOB: Unkown Address: Columbus
X
X
Antonio Solis Acosta, aka Manuel
DOB: Unkown Address: Columbus
X
X
William J. Marvicsin, aka Johnny
DOB: Unkown Address: Richland County
X
 
Kyle R. Rinehart, aka Carlos
DOB: 8/26/1979 Crawford County
X
 
Brad Picklesimer
DOB: 6/12/1978 Address:
X
 
William Tolle, aka Billy
DOB: 11/4/75 Address: Columbus
X
 
Jacob Cornell, aka Jason
DOB: 5/17/1975 Address: Columbus
X
 
Mike D. Heisner
DOB: 5/11/1974 Address: 5298 Tamarack Circle East, Columbus
X
 

Count 1: Conspiracy (0-20 years)[$1million fine, 3 yrs sup. rel, $100]
Count 2: Distribution of more than 100 grams of heroin (5-40 years)[$2 million fine, 4 yrs sup rel, $100]