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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Department of Justice

United States Attorney James R. Dedrick Eastern District of Tennessee


Three Members of Large-Scale Methamphetamine Conspiracy Receive Long Prison Terms

[CHATTANOOGA, Tenn] – Marvin Solomon, 42, of Winchester, Tennessee, Michael Thomas, 47, of Tullahoma, Tennessee, and Terry Cleek, also known as “Trick,” 33, of Estill Springs, Tennessee, were sentenced on Monday to terms of imprisonment of 240 months, 210 months, and 188 months, respectively, in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee at Chattanooga, by the Honorable Harry S. “Sandy” Mattice, United States District Judge. The sentence was the result of guilty pleas by Solomon, Thomas, and Cleek on June 15, 2009, to a federal grand jury indictment charging them with methamphetamine manufacturing and trafficking offenses. The three were charged along with David Nix, Roger Miller, Chad Campbell, Charles Tawwater, Brad Fann, Brian Stephens, Nikki Brents, Shelly Crownover, also known as “Shelly Housley,”and Jennifer Sons, also known as “Jennifer Hensley,” and another individual who has since died, in a forty-count indictment that charged various conspiracy and substantive offenses related to the illegal acquisition of precursor chemicals, manufacture, and trafficking in over 500 grams of methamphetamine. Eight of the defendants had prior criminal convictions and several, including Solomon, Thomas, and Cleek, were subject to enhanced penalties due to these convictions.

All of the defendants have pleaded guilty. Fann and Crownover were sentenced in August to 121 months and 46 months imprisonment, respectively. Miller is scheduled to be sentenced on September 21, 2009; BRENTS and SONS are scheduled to be sentenced on October 5, 2009; Nix and Campbell are to be sentenced on October 21, 2009; Stephens is scheduled to be sentenced on October 26, 2009; and Tawwater is scheduled to be sentenced on November 23, 2009.

Because the defendants were prosecuted by federal authorities and subject to federal drug statutes, their terms of imprisonment are non-parolable.

The indictment and subsequent conviction of this methamphetamine manufacturing and trafficking conspiracy was the result of a two-year investigation by numerous local law enforcement agencies assisted by federal investigators. The investigation stemmed from a prior investigation and prosecution of another large-scale methamphetamine trafficking conspiracy. In addition, records maintained by the Tennessee Methamphetamine Task Force were instrumental in establishing the scope and nature of the case. Federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies continue to partner and actively investigate similar methamphetamine-related activities in the area.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Coffee County Sheriff’s Department, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department, the Marion County Sheriff’s Department, the Monteagle Police Department, the Moore County Sheriff’s Department, and the Winchester Police Department were all involved in the investigation and subsequent indictment, conviction and sentencing of these defendants. The government was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven S. Neff.

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