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OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF WEST VIRGINIA

William J. Ihlenfeld, II
UNITED STATES ATTORNEY


1125 Chapline Street, Federal Building, Suite 3000 ● Wheeling, WV 26003
(304) 234-0100 ● Contact: Fawn E. Thomas, Public Affairs Specialist

February 15, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Four Buckhannon Residents Indicted
on Drug and Firearms Charges

 

ELKINS, WEST VIRGINIA — Four individuals were named in three separate Indictments returned today (February 15, 2011) by a Federal Grand Jury sitting in Elkins, West Virginia.

United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II, announced that:

WILLIAM B. HITT, II, age 41, and GARY W. MORAN, II, age 30, both of Buckhannon, West Virginia, were named in a three-count Indictment. Count One of the Indictment alleges that HITT and MORAN conspired to counterfeit money from July 2009 to August 2009 in Upshur County and Lewis County within the Northern District of West Virginia. Count Two of the Indictment alleges that HITT and MORAN falsely made counterfeit money on July 31, 2009, in Upshur County. Count Three of the Indictment alleges that HITT and MORAN passed counterfeit money with the intent that it be used as true and genuine on July 31, 2009. If convicted, the defendants face a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 on Count One of the Indictment; and a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 each on Counts Two and Three of the Indictment. The case was investigated by the United States Secret Service.

LUTHER MARTIN HEATER, also known as “LUKE,” age 34, of Buckhannon, was named in a three-count Indictment. Count One of the Indictment alleges that HEATER conspired to manufacture and distribute methamphetamine between April 2010 and August 2010 in Upshur County. Count Two of the Indictment alleges that HEATER maintained a drug-involved premise between April 21, 2010, and August 2010 in Upshur County for the purpose of manufacturing, storing, distributing, and using methamphetamine. Count Three of the Indictment alleges that HEATER possessed materials used to manufacture methamphetamine on April 21, 2010, in Upshur County. If convicted, HEATER faces a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment and a fine of $1,000,000 on Count One of the Indictment; a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment and a fine of $500,000 on Count Two of the Indictment; and a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 on Count Three of the Indictment. The case was investigated by the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department.

LAURIE WALKER, age 46, of Buckhannon, was named in a two-count Indictment. Count One of the Indictment alleges that WALKER conspired to manufacture methamphetamine from the Summer of 2008 to August 17, 2009, in Upshur County, West Virginia. Count Two of the Indictment alleges that WALKER stole anhydrous ammonia on August 17, 2009, in Upshur County, knowing that it would be used to manufacture methamphetamine. If convicted, WALKER faces a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment and a fine of $1,000,000 on the conspiracy charge; and a maximum penalty of four years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 on the theft charge. The case was investigated by the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department.

The cases will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Stephen D. Warner.

It should be noted that the charges contained in the Indictments are merely accusations and not evidence of guilt, and that each defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

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