News and Press Releases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


April 30, 2010

INDICTMENT ADDS COUNTERFEITING, ID THEFT CHARGES TO METHAMPHETAMINE TRAFFICKING CASE IN LAWRENCE

Two additional defendants charged

KANSAS CITY, KAN. – A newly unsealed indictment adds two new defendants and broadens charges against a group of defendants in Lawrence, Kan., to include conspiracy to counterfeit U.S. currency, identity theft and other counts, U.S. Attorney Lanny Welch said today.

Charged are Donald Milton Steele, 51, Lawrence, Kan., Randy Jay Dyke, 50, Lawrence, Anthony Wayne Sims, 57, Lawrence, Kimberly M. Cline, 43, Lawrence, Kan., and Robert D. Billinger, 34, Kimberling, Mo.

Steele, Dyke and Sims initially were charged in a criminal complaint filed in February in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Kan. A superseding indictment unsealed April 29, 2010, alleges:

– In December 2009, Steele developed a plan to pay for a large shipment of marijuana with counterfeit money. Steele leased a house he owned on S.E. Taft in Topeka, Kan., to other persons for the purpose of making counterfeit U.S. currency.
– Steel and Cline and others obtained stolen identification documents, credit cards and checkbooks.
– Steele, Dyke and others obtained printers and a laptop computer to make the counterfeit money and Steele announced how he intended to use counterfeit currency, which included buying goods from classified advertisements in the Kansas City Star and Trading Post magazine.
– In February 2010, Dyke passed a counterfeit bill at Harper Corner Square Liquor in Lawrence.
– In February 2010, Steele directed Dyke and Simms to retrieve $10,000 in counterfeit cash from the residence in Topeka.
– Steele and Cline provided a stolen Kansas identity card and stolen checkbooks to another person with the intent that they use the checkbook and checks to purchase a 1978 Ford truck, a 25 horsepower engine for a stump grinder, a bed, climbing ropes and two portable heaters.
– Steele provided stolen checkbooks to another person with the intent that they use the stolen checkbooks and checks to purchase three printers, a laptop computer and other items to be used for counterfeiting U.S. currency.
– Steele, Dyke, Sims and Billinger conspired from Dec. 14, 2009, to Feb., 17, 2010, to manufacture, distribute and possess with the intent to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine and to distribute hydrocodone, methadone and marijuana.
– Dyke is charged with distributing hydrocodone and methadone and Steele with distributing marijuana.
– Steele is charged with unlawfully possessing a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.
– Steele and Dyke are charged with possession with intent to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine.

Upon conviction, the crimes carry the following penalties.
– Conspiracy to distribute counterfeit money: A maximum penalty of five years and a fine up to $250,000.
– Fraud in connection with a means of identification: A maximum penalty of 15 years and a fine up to $250,00 on each count.
– Fraud in connection identification documents: A maximum penalty of 15 years and a fine up to $250,000.
– Aggravated identity theft: A mandatory two years consecutive to other penalties and a fine up to $250,000.
– Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine: Not less than 10 years and not more than life and a fine up to $4 million.
– Distributing hydrocodone: A maximum penalty of 20 years and a fine up to $250,000.
– Distributing marijuana: A maximum penalty of five years and a fine up to $250,000.
– Distributing methadone: A maximum penalty of 20 years and a fine up to $250,000.
– Unlawful possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking: Not less than five years and not more than life and a fine up to $250,000 which must be served consecutive to any other count of conviction.
– Possession with intent to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine: Not less than 10 years and not more than life and a fine up to $8 million.

Agencies that took part in the investigation include the Lawrence Police Department, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department, the Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office, the Topeka Police Department, the Kansas Highway Patrol, the U.S. Secret Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tris Hunt is prosecuting.

In all cases, defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. The indictments filed merely contain allegations of criminal conduct.

 

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