FRESNO, CA — United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner and Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Anthony D. Williams, announced that a federal grand jury returned a superseding indictment today against Timothy Duane, 30, for failure to appear, adding the a fifth criminal charge to four pending drug charges.
According to court documents, Duane, a former Madera County Probation Officer, was indicted on February 18, 2011 for a marijuana cultivation and distribution conspiracy spanning state lines from California to Texas. On February 22, 2011, Duane appeared for a detention hearing before a magistrate judge in the Northern District of Texas who released Duane on his own recognizance. He was ordered to appear before U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill in Fresno on February 25, 2011. Duane failed to appear on that date and has not responded to a court order that he provide justification for his absence no later than noon February 28, 2011.
Based on the marijuana charges, Duane faces a mandatory minimum prison term of five years and a maximum term of 40 years, along with a $2 million fine. Today’s superseding indictment with an added charge of failure to appear can increase Duane’s sentence by an additional 10 years, along with an added fine of $250,000. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.
This case is the product of an extensive investigation by the Fresno Sheriff’s Department, the Texas Department of Public Safety, and the United States Drug Enforcement Administration. Assistant United States Attorney Yasin Mohammad is prosecuting the case.
The charges are only allegations and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.