Pair indicted for conspiracy to distribute bath salts
A federal grand jury returned a six-count indictment charging two people from Northeast Ohio with conspiracy with intent to distribute bath salts, said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.
Indicted are Ryan Kralik, 32, of Newton Falls, and Ruth Eimers, 36, of Ravenna.
“People continue to come up with new ways to poison our children, as long as they think there is money to be made,” Dettelbach said. “These are very dangerous synthetic drugs that have nothing to do with baths or salt and everything to do with risky behavior.”
“These indictments deal a blow to the individuals and criminal groups involved in the distribution of a dangerous synthetic drug in Northeast Ohio. The criminal organizations behind the importation, distribution and selling of these synthetic drugs have scant regard for human life in their reckless pursuit of illicit profits," said William Hayes, acting special agent in charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Detroit, which covers Michigan and Ohio. "HSI is committed to working with our law enforcement partners to help keep this poison off the streets.”
Portage County Sheriff David Doak said: “The sale of bath salts is not going to be tolerated. We were glad to be part of this investigation.”
The defendants own and operate a website named freshsalts.com, which offers for sale 10 to 15 different types of bath salts ranging in price from $29 to $59. Customers can also purchase bulk amounts of bath salts from the web site for between $299 and $459, according to the indictment.
The bath salts are offered for sale with names similar to slang terms for cocaine and heroin, such as “Eightballz Extreme,” “Faux-Caine” and “Zombie Girls Extra Strength,” among others, according to the indictment.
Customers who purchased bath salts from the web site were required to pay with money orders or cashier’s checks to R.M. Kralik, Western Union wire transfer to “Ryan Kralik” in Warren, Ohio, of by cash sent to “FGS” to a P.O. Box in Diamond, Ohio, according to the indictment.
Eimers’ assisted Kralik with distribution shipments and bookkeeping, according to the indictment.
The defendants are charged with conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute and distribution of bath salts, Schedule I controlled substance analogues and a Schedule I controlled substance; importation of bath salts, a controlled substance analogue, from the People’s Republic of China; attempted possession with the intent to distribute bath salts, a controlled substance analogue; use of the Internet for a controlled substance offense; distribution of bath salts, Schedule I controlled substance analogues; and possession with the intent to distribute bath salts, Schedule I controlled substance analogues.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Teresa Dirksen following an investigation by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, the Portage County Drug Task Force and Portage County Sheriff’s Office
If convicted, their sentence will be determined by the court after review of factors unique to this case, including prior criminal records, if any, their role in the offenses and the unique characteristics of the violations. In all cases, the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government's burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.