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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, May 14, 2020

Twelve Defendants Charged for Drug Distribution Conspiracy After Joint Federal, State, and Local Operation

Charleston, South Carolina --- United States Attorney Peter M. McCoy, Jr. announced today that a joint team of federal, state, and local law enforcement officers arrested eight individuals who have all been charged, along with four others, in federal court for their roles in a drug trafficking organization that operated in the Lowcountry of South Carolina.

The recent charges and early-morning arrests on May 14 marked the second wave of Operation Lowcountry Line, an operation which represents a line of federal, state, and local authorities working in tandem to bring consequences to those who harm their communities. The multi-year operation has specifically targeted members and associates of a street gang known as the Dorchester Terrace Crew, DTC, or 4-mile.

“In the midst of a pandemic, this team of brave law enforcement officers let the people of South Carolina, and in particular the folks here in the Lowcountry, know that we are open for business,” said U.S. Attorney McCoy. “Those who break the law will be held accountable. No matter what might be going on in the world, the people of South Carolina deserve to be safe, especially in their own neighborhoods.”

"These arrests and indictments are the result of the tremendous dedication and professionalism of all our law enforcement partners," said Jody Norris, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI.

The eight arrested defendants have been charged in a superseding indictment with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute heroin, cocaine, crack cocaine, methamphetamine, and oxycodone. Additionally, one of the defendants has been charged with firearms offenses:

ANTONIO MILLER, 39, of Ladson, was attributed 500 grams or more of cocaine in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies;

DEANGELO RAVENEL, a/k/a “FAST CASH,” 31, of Ladson, was attributed 500 grams or more of cocaine, 100 grams or more of heroin, and 28 grams or more of crack cocaine in the conspiracy count and charged with possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug tracking crime, using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies, and possession with intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin, 500 grams or more of cocaine, and 28 grams or more of crack cocaine;

RYAN NELSON, A/K/A “CLEPTO,” 39, of Columbia, was attributed 500 grams or more of cocaine in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies;

CONSTANCE S. MANIGAULT, 39, of Charleston, was attributed 50 grams of more of a mixture of methamphetamine and a quantity of heroin in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies and possession with intent to distribute a quantity of heroin and 50 grams or more of a mixture of methamphetamine;

DAMION KAREEB BROWN, a/k/a “D-BLACK, 24, of Charleston, was attributed was attributed 50 grams of more of a mixture of methamphetamine and a quantity of cocaine in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies;

JUAN BAVISTA ANGULO, a/k/a “BUSH,” 38, of North Charleston, was attributed a quantity of cocaine and a quantity of oxycodone in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies;

DOMANECK RYAN ASHLEY DIXON, a/k/a “DOM,” 31, of North Charleston, was attributed a quantity of cocaine in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies; and

RASHARD WHITFIELD, a/k/a “SHARD,” 29, of Charleston, was attributed a quantity of cocaine in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies and possession with intent to distribute a quantity of heroin.

Defendant RAVENEL faces a maximum penalty of life in federal prison and a maximum fine of $5,000,000. Defendants MILLER, NELSON, MANIGAULT, and BROWN face up to 40 years in federal prison and a maximum fine of $5,000,000.  Defendants ANGULO, DIXON, and WHITFIELD face up to 20 years in federal prison and a maximum fine of $1,000,000.

In addition to the defendants arrested, four more defendants have been charged in the superseding indictment with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute heroin, marijuana, cocaine, and methamphetamine. 

LATREL DIQUAN DEMAINE HAMILTON, a/k/a “TREL BLACK,” a/k/a “LATINO,” 24, of Charleston, was attributed 50 grams of more of a mixture of methamphetamine and a quantity of heroin in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies;

TIEMEYER O’NEIL GETHERS, a/k/a “T.O.,” 39, of Mount Pleasant, was attributed a quantity of cocaine in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies;

TIMOTHY ROBINSON JR., a/k/a “THRILLER,” 33, of North Charleston, was attributed a quantity of cocaine and a quantity of marijuana in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies; and

OREALIUS SYRON NELSON, a/k/a “SYRON,” a/k/a “KEMO,” 42, of Mount Pleasant, was attributed a quantity of cocaine in the conspiracy count and charged with using a communication facility to facilitate drug felonies.

Defendant HAMILTON faces up to 40 years in federal prison and a maximum fine of $5,000,000.  Defendants GETHERS, ROBINSON JR., and NELSON face up to 20 years in federal prison and a maximum fine of $1,000,000.

According to the fifty-count superseding indictment, the case involves members of a street gang who obtained bulk supplies of heroin, cocaine, and other narcotics from interstate sources of supply and then redistributed the drugs to street-level drug dealers in the greater Charleston area.  The superseding indictment also alleges that the gang members and associates threatened violence and used firearms to defend themselves and their criminal enterprise from rival drug dealers and gang members.

In July 2019, ten defendants were charged in the first wave of Operation Lowcountry Line for drug and firearms related offenses. Five of those defendants have pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing.

During the course of the investigation into these drug trafficking organizations, agents have seized a substantial amount of cocaine, crack cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and firearms.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), United States Postal Inspection Service, Charleston County Sheriff’s Office, North Charleston Police Department, Charleston Police Department, Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office, Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office, Mount Pleasant Police Department, South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), Ninth Circuit Solicitor’s Office, and the Charleston County Aviation Authority.

This case is being prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime. Assistant United States Attorney Everett McMillian is prosecuting the case.

The United States Attorney stated that all charges in this indictment are merely accusations and that all defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

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The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of our agency at www.Justice.gov/Celebrating150Years.

dsc_lowcountry_line_2_indictment.pdf

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Drug Trafficking
Component(s): 
Contact: 
Derek A. Shoemake (843) 813-0982
Updated May 14, 2020