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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Jersey

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Lead Defendant In Drug Trafficking Organization Admits Role In Heroin Distribution Conspiracy; Wife Admits Obstructing Justice

TRENTON, N.J. – A Monroe County, Pennsylvania, man today admitted that he conspired to distribute more than one kilogram of heroin as part of a conspiracy responsible for distributing significant quantities of heroin and cocaine in and around the Bayshore area of Monmouth and Middlesex counties, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.

Guy Jackson, 47, of Effort, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Brian R. Martinotti in Trenton federal court to an information charging him with one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin. Jackson also admitted to conspiring to distribute and possess with intent to distribute a quantity of cocaine.

Also today, Jackson’s wife, Lashawn Mealing, 48, of Manchester, New Jersey, (formerly of Effort, Pennsylvania), pleaded guilty before Judge Martinotti to an information charging her with one count of obstructing and attempting to obstruct justice with respect to the charges against Jackson and others, while Mealing was herself on federal pretrial release in the present case.

In November 2018, Jackson, Mealing, and 13 others were charged in a federal criminal complaint with conspiracy to distribute heroin and cocaine. Mealing and Jackson are the 10th and 11th defendants to plead guilty. Defendant Deberal Rogers has been indicted.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

From May 2017 to November 2018, the defendants and others engaged in a narcotics conspiracy that operated in the Raritan Bayshore region. Through the interception of telephone calls and text messages pursuant to court-authorized wiretap orders, controlled purchases of heroin and cocaine, the use of confidential sources of information, and other investigative techniques, law enforcement learned that Jackson regularly obtained large quantities of heroin and cocaine for further distribution from co-defendant Gregory Gillens. The complaint alleged that Mealing also engaged in the conspiracy to distribute these narcotics. Gillens previously pleaded guilty to his role in the conspiracy and is scheduled to be sentenced on June 2, 2020.

Members of the conspiracy sold the narcotics to other conspirators, distributors, sub-dealers, and end-users. Some of the heroin distributed by the conspiracy contained fentanyl, a dangerous synthetic opioid.

Following the filing of the complaint in November 2018, Mealing obstructed justice and attempted to do so by orchestrating, at Jackson’s request, the break-in of a rental vehicle that had been used as part of the narcotics trafficking conspiracy and the removal of evidence of the narcotics offense from the rental vehicle.

The heroin conspiracy count to which Jackson pleaded guilty carries a statutory mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 10 years, a maximum potential penalty of life in prison, and a maximum fine of $10 million. If accepted by the court at the time of sentencing, Jackson’s plea agreement would result in Jackson serving a stipulated total sentence between 12 and 17½ years in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for June 23, 2020.

The obstruction of justice while on federal pretrial release count to which Mealing pleaded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of 30 years in prison, and a maximum fine of $250,000. Sentencing is scheduled for June 23, 2020.

Jackson has been in custody since his arrest on November 28, 2018.

U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the FBI, Newark Division, Red Bank Resident Agency, Jersey Shore Gang and Criminal Organization Task Force (including representatives from the Bradley Beach Police Department, Brick Police Department, Howell Police Department, Marlboro Police Department, Monmouth County Sheriff's Office, Toms River Police Department, and Union Beach Police Department) under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Gregory W. Ehrie; special agents of the FBI, Philadelphia Division, Scranton Resident Agency, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge Tara McMahon; the New Jersey State Police, under the direction of Col. Patrick J. Callahan, Superintendent; the Matawan Police Department, under the direction of Chief Thomas J. Falco, Jr.; the Holmdel Police Department, under the direction of Chief John Mioduszewski; the Highlands Police Department, under the direction of Chief Robert Burton; the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni; the Old Bridge Police Department, under the direction of Chief William A. Volkert; the Keansburg Police Department, under the direction of Chief James K. Pigott; the Hazlet Police Department, under the direction of Chief Philip Meehan; and the Aberdeen Police Department, under the direction of Chief John T. Powers, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty pleas.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Elisa T. Wiygul of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Criminal Division in Trenton.

The charges and allegations against the remaining four defendants are merely accusations and they are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Defense counsel:
Jackson: Lorraine S. Gauli-Rufo Esq., Verona, New Jersey
Mealing: David E. Schafer Esq., Princeton, New Jersey

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Component(s): 
Press Release Number: 
20-071
Updated February 18, 2020