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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                                                          March 11, 2013                   


HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin announced that a Michigan man pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting the possession with intent to distribute heroin. Ralph Oliver Mayes, Jr., 36, of Dearborn Heights, Michigan, admitted to the charge today in federal court. 

On January 9, 2013, officers with the Barboursville Police Department arrested Mayes for obstructing and possession of Vicodin tablets.  Following his arrest, Mayes was transported to the Barboursville Police Department.  During a custodial search of the defendant, police found two bags containing 33 individually wrapped bags of a substance that field tested positive for heroin.  Mayes admitted that each bag contained approximately .1 grams of heroin.  Mayes further admitted that he intended to sell the heroin.   

Mayes faces up to 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine when he is sentenced on June 17, 2013 by Chief United States District Judge Robert C. Chambers. 

The Barboursville Police Department and the Huntington Violent Crimes and Drug Task Force conducted the investigation.  Assistant United States Attorney Gregory McVey is in charge of the prosecution. 
The case was prosecuted as part of an ongoing effort led by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia to combat the illicit sale and misuse of prescription drugs.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office, joined by federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, is committed to aggressively pursuing and shutting down illegal pill trafficking, eliminating open air drug markets, and curtailing the spread of opiate painkillers in communities across the Southern District. 

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