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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Kansas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Indictment: Couple Operated Moonshine Still in Newton

WICHITA, KAN. – A Newton couple were indicted in federal court here Tuesday on charges of operating a moonshine still in the basement of their home, U.S. Attorney Tom Beall said.

Ryan Penner, 41, and Jennifer Penner, 37, both of Newton, were charged with one count of possession of an unregistered still, one count of unlawful production of distilled spirits, and one count of failing to be bonded as a distiller.

The indictment alleges the Penners produced moonshine, which is illegal liquor on which federal and state excise taxes have not been paid.

The indictment alleges the investigation began in August when the Newton Police Department learned the defendants were producing and selling moonshine from their home in the 1000 block of E. 7th in Newton. Undercover officers made several purchases. A quart of moonshine typically sold for $20. Police served a search warrant at the home and seized a still built around a 15.5-gallon beer keg with metal legs and copper tubing.

If convicted, they face up to five years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000. The Newton Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms and Explosives and the Kansas Alcoholic Beverage Control investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorney Matt Treaster is prosecuting.

OTHER GRAND JURY INDICTMENTS

Lori A. Spaulding, 53, Augusta, Kan., a former payroll manager at Spirit AeroSystems, is charged with one count of wire fraud. The indictment alleges she made false claims to the company for tuition reimbursement and pay for unused time off.

If convicted, she faces up to 20 years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000. The FBI investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorney Alan Metzger is prosecuting.

Jason P. Briscoe, 39, Salina, Kan., and Jamie L. Husley, 38, Salina, Kan., are charged with one count of unlawful possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking (count one), one count of unlawful possession of a firearm following a felony conviction (count two), one count of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine (count three) and one count of unlawful possession of a firearm with serial number removed (count four). The crimes are alleged to have occurred Nov. 18, 2016, in Smolan, Kan.

Upon conviction the crimes carry the following penalties:

Count one: Up to life in prison and a fine up to $250,000.

Count two: Up to 10 years and a fine up to $250,000.

Count three: Up to 20 years and a fine up to $250,000.

Count four: Up to five years and a fine up to $250,000.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorney Matt Treaster is prosecuting.

Gary W. Yenzer, 34, Derby, Kan., is charged with one count of theft by a mail employee (count one), one count of possession of stolen gift cards (count two), and one count of aggravated identity theft (count three). The crimes are alleged to have occurred in September 2016 in Sedgwick County, Kan. While the defendant was a rural mail carrier for the U.S. Postal Service.

If convicted, he faces the following penalties

Count one: up to five years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000.

Count two: Up to 10 years and a fine up to $250,000.

Count three: A mandatory consecutive two years and a fine up to $250,000.

The U.S. Postal Service-Office of Inspector investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorney Brent Anderson is prosecuting.

In all cases, defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. The indictments merely contain allegations of criminal conduct.

 

Topic(s): 
Tax
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Updated December 7, 2016