Four people indicted for marijuana grow operation in Geauga and Ashtabula counties; nearly 1,600 plants and 20 firearms were seized
Four people were indicted in federal court for their roles in a marijuana grow and distribution ring in which nearly 1,600 plants and numerous firearms were seized.
Named in the six-count indictment are: James Nagy, 37, of Willoughby; Kenneth Sovaca, 27, of Geneva; Bridget Gregori, 27, of Richmond Heights, and Robert Weikart, 37, of Wickliffe.
Nagy, Sovaca and Weikert are charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute marijuana. Weikart is charged with possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.
All four defendants are charged with maintaining a drug house from an address on Ledge Road in Thompson Township. Nagy and Weikart are charged with maintaining a drug house related to an address on Clay Street in Ashtabula County.
Investigators seized approximately 1,580 plants from two locations on Nov. 7, 2017. They also seized $107,822 in cash and approximately 20 firearms, according to court documents.
“We have seen time and again that guns are unfortunately present in every large drug operation,” U.S. Attorney Justin E. Herdman said. “This was a large marijuana trafficking organization that, not surprisingly, included an AK-47 and other firearms as part of its illegal enterprise. This is but one example of what we see in law enforcement operations all the time – where there are large amounts of drugs and cash, violence and firearms are almost always present as well.”
DEA Special Agent in Charge Timothy Plancon said: “Drug trafficking and violence are synonymous. The arrest and prosecution of these gun-toting marijuana dealers contributes to the safety of the Geauga and Ashtabula community.”
This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Geauga County Sheriff’s Office, Willoughby Police Department, Ashtabula County Sheriff’s Office, Ashtabula Police Department, Westlake Police Department, Lake County Narcotics Agency and Ohio BCI. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Marisa T. Darden and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Joyce of the Geauga County Prosecutor’s Office.
If convicted, the defendant’s sentence will be determined by the Court after reviewing factors unique to this case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record, if any, the defendant’s role in the offense and the characteristics of the violation. In all cases the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.
An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. Defendants are entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.