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May 19, 2011

Department of Justice

United States Attorney William C. Killian Eastern District of Tennessee


FEDERAL, STATE AND LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENTS ARREST MEMBERS OF A MAJOR DRUG TRAFFICKING ORGANIZATION FOR OXYCODONE, COCAINE AND MARIJUANA TRAFFICKING

KINGSPORT, Tenn: A federal grand jury in Greeneville, Tenn., returned a four-count indictment on May 11, 2011, charging 23 defendants with conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute oxycodone, cocaine, and marijuana, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Section 846. Federal, state, and local law enforcement agents, executed arrest warrants early yesterday morning and took into custody several defendants indicted for being involved in the oxycodone, cocaine and marijuana trafficking organization which was operating in north east Tennessee, southwest Virginia, Michigan, and Florida. Those apprehended made their initial appearance in Greeneville, Tenn., before U.S. Magistrate Judge Dennis H. Inman.

The indictment was the result of a long-term investigation that involved law enforcement officers with the following agencies: the Tennessee Second Judicial District Drug Task Force, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, Southwest Virginia Task Force, Kingsport Tennessee Police Department, Sullivan County Tennessee Sheriff’s Office, Bristol Tennessee Police Department, Johnson City Tennessee Police Department, Washington County Tennessee Sheriff’s Office, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Drug Enforcement Administration, and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations Division, all of which provided valuable assistance during the course of the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Robert M. Reeves and Zachary T. Lee will represent the United States in this prosecution. Other individuals related to this investigation have been charged by Sullivan County Tennessee District Attorney General H. Greeley Wells, Jr., and by Wise County Virginia Commonwealth’s Attorney Ronald K. Elkins.

Those indicted include the following individuals: Rodney Allen Mitchell, 32, Kingsport, Tenn.; Jennifer Mitchell, 38, Kingsport, Tenn.; Rachel Goad, 34, Kingsport, Tenn.; Lloyd James Steed, Jr., 34, Detroit, Mich.; Gilbert Miller, 42, Kingsport, Tenn.; James Howard Poole, Jr., 39, Kingsport, Tenn.; Maurice William Gravely, 40, Johnson City, Tenn.; Jarian Hamler, 31, Jonesborough, Tenn.; Joshua Clark Martin, 29, Kingsport, Tenn.; Shawn James Banks, 40, Detroit, Mich.; Marquis Cornelius Taylor, 37, Miami, Fla.; Nekia Dwayne Clark, 35, Big Stone Gap, Va.; Allen Vaughn Crews, 37, Centerville, Va.; Justin Colby Vaughn, 36, Del Ray Beach, Fla.; Curtis Louis Prior, Jr., 35, Kingsport, Tenn.; Antwain Dwayne Hollinger, 27, Big Stone Gap, Va.; Adrian Jamal Cornette, 27, Wise County, Va.; Mose Devaughn White, 34, Johnson City, Tenn.; Duvale Pruitt, 37, Kingsport, Tenn.; Stephen Anthony Graham, 25, Johnson City, Tenn.; Stacy Montague White, 39, Kingsport, Tenn.; Keira Lashawn Moore, 29, Big Stone Gap, Va.; and Cedric D’Andre Mitchell, 22, Big Stone Gap, Va.;

If convicted, those defendants charged in the oxycodone conspiracy face a term of not more than 20 years in prison, a fine of $1,000,000.00, and a term of supervised release of at least three years. Those defendants charged in the cocaine conspiracy face a minimum mandatory term of 10 years to life in prison, a fine of $4,000,000.00, and a term of supervised release of at least five years. Those defendants charged in the marijuana conspiracy face a term not more than five years in prison, a fine of $250,000.00, and a term of supervised release of at least two years.

U.S. Attorney Bill Killian praised the efforts of the investigative agencies involved in this effort. “These indictments are the result of a multi-agency collaborative investigation which spanned several years and several states. It is an example of the results that can be produced when local, state and federal agencies cooperate and work together. All of these agencies should be commended for their communication, cooperation and collaboration with each other and with the U.S. Attorney's Offices of the Eastern District of Tennessee and Western District of Virginia,” said Killian.

“This case is an example of the excellent cooperation between our local law enforcement in Sullivan County and the federal officials in the Eastern District of Tennessee,” stated District Attorney General H. Greeley Wells, Jr.

This prosecution is brought as a part of the Department of Justice’s Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) program, the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s drug supply reduction strategy. OCDETF was established in 1982 to conduct comprehensive, multi-level attacks on major drug trafficking and money laundering organizations. Today, OCDETF combines the resources and expertise of its member federal agencies in cooperation with state and local law enforcement. The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt, and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking and money laundering organizations and those primarily responsible for the nation’s drug supply.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment constitutes only charges and that every person is presumed innocent until their guilt has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

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