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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Carolina

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, December 22, 2014

Heroin and Methamphetamine Trafficking Enterprise Operating in Lowcountry and Upstate South Carolina Charged in Charleston, SC

Contact Person: Beth Drake (803) 929-3000

Charleston, South Carolina ---- Bill Nettles, the United States Attorney for the District of South Carolina; John S. Comer, the acting Special Agent in Charge of the Atlanta Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration (“DEA”); Mark Keel, the Chief of the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (“SLED”); and Gregory Mullen, the Chief of Police for the City of Charleston, SC announce the indictment and arrests of defendants in a drug trafficking enterprise.  As specified in unsealed indictments, the defendants allegedly conspired to distribute more than 100 grams heroin and more than 500 grams of methamphetamine in South Carolina and elsewhere.

The listed defendants were arrested, arraigned or are in custody based on the indictment:
 

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Valentino Gonzalez a/k/a Piojo was arrested in Spartanburg County, SC on December 8, 2014.
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John Wayne Whitaker was arrested in Pickens County, SC on December 8, 2014.
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Juan Enrique Rodriguez was arrested in the custody of the South Carolina Department of Corrections on December 16, 2014.
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Alfred Adams, Jr. was arrested in Orangeburg County, SC on December 20, 2014.
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Maxine Adams was arrested in Charleston County, SC on December 22, 2014.
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Cynthia Adams was arrested in Cobb County, GA on December 22, 2014.

Over 6,000 grams of methamphetamine and over 350 grams of heroin were seized in the investigation.  Approximately $25,000 in alleged drug proceeds were also seized.  The indictment resulted from an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force investigation involving DEA Charleston Task Force, DEA Greenville Resident Office, SLED, Charleston Police Department, South Carolina Highway Patrol, Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office, and Anderson County Sheriff’s Office. 

"These arrests are the result of extensive coordination and investigation between federal, state and local law enforcement officials.  Through their hard work, we have been able to remove significant quantities of drugs from the streets and apprehend a number of individuals involved in bringing those drugs into our district,” said United States Attorney Bill Nettles. The mission of DEA is unwavering--we combat drug traffickers by investigating and prosecuting those who distribute illicit drugs which causes immeasurable damage to our communities. Today's enforcement activity is a perfect example of how the law enforcement community works together to remove such criminals from the streets,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge John S. Comer of the DEA Atlanta Field Division.

The DEA Charleston Task Force is comprised of Special Agents and Task Force Officers from DEA, Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office, Charleston County Sheriff’s Office, Charleston Police Department, Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office, Hampton County Sheriff’s Office, North Charleston Police Department, Mount Pleasant Police Department, South Carolina Highway Patrol, South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, and Summerville Police Department.

Prosecution of the investigation is led by Assistant United States Attorney Nick Bianchi of the United States Attorney’s Office in Charleston, SC. 

The charges contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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Updated February 12, 2015