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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 25, 2022

Member of Moultrie Meth Trafficking Network Sentenced

ALBANY, Ga. –A Moultrie, Georgia, resident and participant in a methamphetamine trafficking network operating in the area was sentenced to prison for her crime.

Melissa Barrow, 48, of Moultrie, was sentenced to serve 188 months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release by U.S. District Judge Louis Sands on March 24, after she pleaded guilty to distribution of methamphetamine on Dec. 22, 2021. There is no parole in the federal system.

According to court documents, GBI began investigating a drug distribution conspiracy in Colquitt and Brooks counties in Nov. 2020, initially based on information that co-defendant April Contreras was selling methamphetamine in the region. During the course of the investigation, agents discovered that co-defendant Robert Smith, who was incarcerated at the Colquitt County Jail, was working with Contreras and co-defendants Aubrey Thompson and Corey Haynes in the sale of controlled substances. Barrow, working under the direction of Contreras, sold methamphetamine to a confidential informant (CI). Barrow would also collect drug proceeds on behalf of Contreras. Co-defendant Roderick Smith was directed by Robert Smith to provide cash to Contreras for the purposes of methamphetamine trafficking. In all, this methamphetamine trafficking network is accountable for the distribution of between 1.5 kilograms and 4.5 kilograms of methamphetamine.

The following co-defendants have entered guilty pleas and are awaiting sentencing:

April Contreras, 31, of Moultrie, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine on March 10;

Corey Haynes, 42, of Moultrie, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute cocaine on Feb. 2;

Robert Lee Smith, III, 46, of Moultrie, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine on March 17; and,

Roderick Smith, 40, of Moultrie, pleaded guilty to use of a communication facility in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime on March 3.

The following co-defendant entered a guilty plea and was sentenced:

Aubrey Thompson pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine on Dec. 7, 2021. Thompson was sentenced to 96 months imprisonment to be followed by three years of supervised release.

The case was investigated by DEA, FBI, GBI, Georgia State Patrol, Lee County Sheriff’s Office, Brooks County Sheriff’s Office, Colquitt County Sheriff’s Office and Moultrie Police Department.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Melody Ellis is prosecuting the case.

Updated March 25, 2022