News and Press Releases

Leader Of International Drug Trafficking Conspiracy Sentenced To 15 Years Imprisonment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 9, 2013

WILMINGTON, Del. – Charles M. Oberly, III, United States Attorney for the District of Delaware, announced today that Ronaldo Edmund, age 38, of Wilmington, Delaware, was sentenced on September 9, 2013, to a term of imprisonment of fifteen (15) years for his role as a leader of an international drug trafficking conspiracy.

 According to facts introduced in prior hearings, Edmund was the leader of an organization which recruited multiple drug couriers to travel to Panama in order to smuggle cocaine and heroin into the United States.  Edmund, a Panamanian national, facilitated and coordinated the travel of the couriers to Panama, and he maintained and managed contact with the Panamanian sources of supply.  Agents identified a total of at least nineteen (19) couriers who took smuggling trips to Panama on behalf of the organization, and who smuggled, or attempted to smuggle, more than thirteen (13) kilograms of cocaine and five kilograms of heroin from Panama to Wilmington. 

The investigation also uncovered a separate source of supply, Saleem A. Sharif, a former West Point graduate and Captain in the United States Army, who shipped multiple kilograms of heroin from Kabul, Afghanistan, to the United States.  Sharif and three other individuals – Charles Richardson, Darrold Thomas, and Sayeed A. Behrooz – have pleaded, or are scheduled to plead guilty, to offenses relating to the shipment of heroin from Afghanistan.

To date, the government has charged twenty-three individuals in the United States with drug trafficking offenses as a result of the investigation.  All but four of those defendants – each of whom remain abroad in Panama – have pleaded guilty, or have agreed to plead guilty, to drug-related offenses.  A listing of the charged defendants and their current status is set forth in Attachment A.

United States Attorney Charles M. Oberly, III, stated, “I commend the hard work and relentless dedication of our law enforcement partners over the past four years in dismantling two major drug trafficking organizations that imported cocaine and heroin from Panama and Afghanistan into the United States.  The fact that these drugs made it onto the streets of Wilmington and our surrounding communities demonstrates the reach of international drug trafficking organizations – and the importance of utilizing all necessary resources to stop them.  The sentence imposed on Mr. Edmund is significant, reflects his leadership role in the offense, and should serve as a serious deterrent for others in the community who would consider getting involved in international drug smuggling.”

The investigation was led by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Department of Homeland Security – Homeland Security Investigations, the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division, and the Wilmington Police Department. 

Investigators also received invaluable assistance from the Panamanian National Police; the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Texas; the United States Marshals Service for the District of Delaware; the Newark (Delaware) Police Department; the Delaware State Police; the New Castle County Police Department; the Delaware Department of Corrections, Probation and Parole; the Cecil County (Maryland) Drug Task Force; the Pennsylvania State Police; the Maryland State Police; and the Elkton (Maryland) Police Department.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Robert F. Kravetz.  For further information, contact Press Information Officer Kimberlynn Reeves at (302) 573-6277, ext. 16287.

ATTACHMENT A
Status of Defendants Charged in Panama/Afghanistan Drug Investigation

Defendant  District Case No.  Status

 

Tissany Buckham

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Sentenced on April 10, 2013, to 22 months imprisonment

 

Kimberly Fowler

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Completed pretrial diversion on November 6, 2012

 

Kelvin Cook

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Sentenced on June 20, 2013, to 180 months imprisonment

 

Julio Archer

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Sentenced on June 11, 2013, to 60 months imprisonment

 

Roumik Banerjee

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Sentenced on April 3, 2013, to 57 months imprisonment

 

Mia Poteat

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Sentenced on April 3, 2013, to 37 months imprisonment

 

Tina Simmons

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Sentenced on May 7, 2013, to three years’ probation and six months home detention

 

Tessa Snyder

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Pleaded guilty on May 18, 2012; pending sentencing

 

Dynisha Revel

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Charged defendant, currently incarcerated in Panama

 

Raabia Munir

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Charged defendant; a plea hearing is scheduled for October 16, 2013

 

Sharon Butera

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Charged defendant, currently incarcerated in Panama

 

Efrain Dixon

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Charged defendant, Panamanian national

 

Benjamin Carpenter

 

Delaware

 

11-63-RGA

 

Charged defendant, Panamanian national

 

Tara Resto

 

Delaware

 

09-102-GMS

 

Pleaded guilty on April 13, 2010; sentencing hearing scheduled for September 26, 2013

 

Kevin Morris

 

Delaware

 

12-41-RGA

 

Pleaded guilty on July 25, 2012; sentencing hearing scheduled for October 22, 2013

 

 

Saleem A. Sharif

 

Delaware

 

12-53-RGA

 

Sentenced on September 4, 2013, to 120 months imprisonment

 

Charles Richardson

 

Delaware

 

12-44-RGA

 

Sentenced on January 29, 2013, to 60 months imprisonment

 

Darrold Thomas

 

Delaware

 

12-65-RGA

 

Sentenced on August 27, 2013, to 54 months imprisonment

 

Sayeed A. Behrooz

 

Delaware

 

13-93-RGA

 

Charged defendant; plea hearing scheduled for October 15, 2013

 

Neisha Miller

 

Southern Dist. of TX

 

5: 11-43-01

 

Sentenced on September 20, 2011 to 36 months imprisonment

 

Gloria Miller

 

Southern Dist. of TX

 

5: 11-43-02

 

Sentenced on September 20, 2011 to 36 months imprisonment

 

Christine A. Blevins

 

Southern Dist. of TX

 

5: 09-388-01

 

Sentenced on March 4, 2010, to 60 months imprisonment

 

Bridgette Davidson

 

Southern Dist. of TX

 

5: 09-388-02

 

Sentenced on March 12, 2010, to 60 months imprisonment

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