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Press Release

Members Of Oxycodone Distribution Ring Convicted In Federal Court

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of West Virginia

1125 Chapline Street, Federal Building, Suite 3000 ● Wheeling, WV 26003
(304) 234-0100 ● Contact: Chris Zumpetta-Parr, Public Affairs Specialist

WHEELING, WV - Five people were convicted in federal court this week for their roles in a cross-country prescription painkiller distribution ring.

DIANE SAVAGE, age 49, ALISHA LETTS, age 29, ROCQUE GARCIA, age 54, all of Moundsville, and JULIA JOSEPH, age 44, of Van Nuys, California, entered pleas of guilty this week to "Conspiracy to Distribute Oxycodone” before U.S. Magistrate Judge James Seibert. The acts in the conspiracy occurred over a period of three years and involved large quantities of pills being shipped from California to Moundsville via the U.S. Postal Service. The pills were then re-distributed in the Moundsville area by members of the conspiracy.

ROCCI WADE, 59, of Moundsville, was also part of the conspiracy and he was found guilty yesterday in federal court after a two-day jury trial. He was convicted of “Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Oxycodone” and “Distribution of Oxycodone.”

SAVAGE, who is in custody, and LETTS, GARCIA and JOSEPH, who are on bond, pending sentencing face up to 20 years in prison. WADE is also in custody and he faces up to 40 years in prison. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of each defendant.

The matter was investigated by the Marshall County Drug Task Force and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Randolph Bernard and Robert McWilliams.

In other matters this week in federal court, SOLOMON SIMS, age 57 of Wheeling, was sentenced to 21 months in prison and three years of supervised release for "Maintaining a Drug-Involved Residence" from November of 2012 to January 18, 2013, for the purpose of distributing heroin, crack cocaine and marijuana. SIMS was sentenced by Judge Frederick P. Stamp, Jr., and was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal pending designation to a Federal institution.

CHARLES WILKES, age 28, of Wheeling, entered a plea of guilty before Judge Stamp to "Distribution of Crack Cocaine within 1,000 feet of the Heritage Port Playground." WILKES, who is in custody pending sentencing, faces up to 40 years in prison.

The SIMS and WILKES cases were prosecuted by Bernard and investigated by the Ohio Valley Drug Task Force, which is comprised of officers and agents from the West Virginia State Police-BCI, the Wheeling Police Department, the Ohio County Sheriff’s Department, and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Finally, DANIEL JOSEPH NASCEMBENI, 71, of Petersburg, WV, appeared before
Chief Judge John Preston Bailey and entered pleas of guilty to "Mail Fraud" and "False Statement of Material Fact in Application for Social Security Income Benefits." NASCEMBENI, who is on bond, faces up to 20 years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine on the mail fraud charge and up to 5 years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine on the false statement charge. This matter was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen D. Warner and was investigated by the Social Security Administration and the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources.

Updated January 7, 2015