DOJ SealDepartment of Justice

United States Attorney John L. Ratcliffe
Eastern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                               CONTACT:  DAVILYN WALSTON
FRIDAY, APRIL 18, 2008                                                      PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER
WWW.USDOJ.GOV/USAO/txe                          PHONE: (409) 839-2538 CELL: (409) 553-9881


            BEAUMONT, TX – Early today, a combined task force of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies began arresting individuals involved in crack cocaine drug trafficking in East Texas.  Agents and officers arrested 6 individuals in today's round-up.

            According to separate court documents, the defendants were part of separate conspiracies to traffic in crack cocaine.  On April 16, 2008, a federal grand jury in Beaumont returned separate Indictments charging 9 people with various crimes related to the distribution of crack cocaine in the Lufkin and Nacogdoches area.  The following defendants are in custody and are charged with Possession with Intent to Distribute Crack Cocaine:

MARTIN OCON JR., 27, of Lufkin
DANNY RAY POOL, 28, of Lufkin
DERRICK TATUM, 32, of Lufkin
RODNEY MORRIS, 36, of Nacogdoches
JUSTIN BURLEIGH, 27, of Nacogdoches
KELWIN BERRY, 33, of Nacogdoches

 Detention hearings are scheduled for April 24, 2008 before United States Magistrate Judge Keith Giblin.  If convicted, the defendants could face up to life in prison. 

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lisa Flournoy and J. Malcolm Bales are prosecuting the different cases.  Those involved in the investigations and today's arrests include the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Texas Department of Public Safety Narcotics Division, the U.S. Marshals Service, the Lufkin Police Department, the Nacogdoches County Sheriff's Office, and the Nacogdoches Police Department.

            A grand jury indictment is not evidence of guilt.  All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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