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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Twelve people indicted for their roles in Cleveland cocaine conspiracy

A 30-count indictment was unsealed today, charging a dozen people with conspiring to distribute cocaine throughout Greater Cleveland, said Carole S. Rendon, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, and Stephen D. Anthony, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Cleveland Office.

Indicted are: Darrien Smith, 43, of South Euclid; Brandon McKinnie, aka Fat B, 31, of University Heights; Joseph Martin, aka Joe Caddy, 31, of Cleveland; Tristan Ingram, 28, of Parma; Robert Serina, aka Bobby Champagne, 36, of Cleveland; Wesley Ely, 39, of Parma; Christine Hoenie, aka Cali Miles, 34, of Cleveland; Ben May, 23, of Noblesville, Ind.; Luis Cabrera, 27, of Cleveland; Francisco Sanchez, 34, of Brook Park; Kenneth Paden, aka Chop, 38, of Cleveland; and Clifton Coleman, 55, of South Euclid.

Smith obtained large amounts of cocaine and sold it to McKinnie, who in turn sold it to Martin, who sold the cocaine to Ingram. Ely, Cabrera, Sanchez and Paden purchased cocaine from Ingram for distribution. Hoenie arranged cocaine sales for Serina, according to the indictment.

The conspiracy took place between 2013 and 2014, according to the indictment.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Margaret Sweeney and Michelle Baeppler following an investigation by the Northern Ohio Law Enforcement Task Force.

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.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Component(s): 
Updated September 28, 2016