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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Ohio

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Eight from Northeast Ohio indicted for conspiracy to distribute crack and powder cocaine on east side of Cleveland

Eight people from Northeast Ohio were indicted for their roles in a conspiracy to distribute powder and crack cocaine on the East Side of Cleveland, said U.S. Attorney Carole S. Rendon and FBI Special Agent in Charge Stephen D. Anthony.


Named in the 23-count indictment are: Calvin Gore, 34; Ronald Park, 49; Ronnie Townsend, Jr., 41; Million Wheeler, 43; Derrick Rivers, 36; Freddie Love, 45; Terry Gardner, 29, and Laverne Rucker, 56. All the defendants are from Cleveland except Love, who lives in Euclid.


Gore obtained multiple-ounce quantities of cocaine from Parks and Wheeler. Gore then distributed the cocaine to dealers in Cleveland, including Townsend, Rivers, Love, Gardner and Rucker, according to the indictment.


Gore used the residence at 14329 Benwood Avenue in Cleveland to storing and distributing the cocaine, according to the indictment.


Prosecutors are seeking to forfeit $13,308 in cash seized during the investigation, as well as two firearms, ammunition and a 2006 Lexus.


If convicted, the defendants’ sentences will be determined by the Court after review of the factors unique to this case, including the defendants’ prior criminal records, their roles in the offense and the characteristics of the criminal conduct. In all cases, the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.


This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Vasile C. Katsaros and Phillip J. Tripi following an investigation by the Northern Ohio Law Enforcement Task Force. The NOLETF is a task force comprised of investigators from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Cleveland Division of Police, Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority, Drug Enforcement Administration, Internal Revenue Service, Customs and Border Patrol, Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Office, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Ohio Adult Parole Authority and the police departments of Euclid, Lakewood, the Regional Transit Authority, Westlake and Moreland Hills. The NOLETF is also one of the initial Ohio High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area initiatives, which supports and helps coordinate numerous Ohio drug task forces in their efforts to eliminate or reduce drug trafficking in Ohio.


An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Drug Trafficking
Updated February 23, 2017