You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Eight defendants in drug-trafficking operation targeted in 12-count federal indictment

Conspiracy distributed methamphetamine, cocaine, crack and marijuana

DUBLIN, GA:  Eight people have been charged in a 12-count federal indictment alleging a brazen drug-trafficking conspiracy in and around Laurens County.

The defendants, named in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury and unsealed in U.S. District Court in Dublin, Ga., on Tuesday, Feb. 4, were taken into federal custody at the culmination of Operation “The Hole,” named for the shack the conspirators used for extensive narcotics distribution, said Bobby L. Christine, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia.

“The Laurens County Sheriff’s Office’s association with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Ocmulgee Drug Task Force, and numerous local and state law agencies brought this organization down,” said Laurens County Sheriff Larry Dean. “A criminal organization such as this one takes time, teamwork and perseverance to dismantle, and we are thankful to the citizens of Laurens County for their patience during this investigation. My deputies and I will not stop this fight against drugs as long as I am your sheriff.”   

The operation, coordinated by agents of the DEA, along with the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office and the Ocmulgee Drug Task Force, targeted a drug-trafficking ring moving large quantities of methamphetamine, cocaine, crack cocaine and marijuana into the Laurens County starting as early as 2013. The investigation identified a shack called “The Hole” as the “trap house,” or central distribution site, complete with a retail-like service counter for drug transactions, along with other Dublin-area locations.

During the execution of multiple federal search warrants, agents seized significant quantities of narcotics, including pounds of methamphetamine, cocaine and marijuana, along with 24 firearms, nearly $37,000 in cash, gold and silver with an estimated value of $90,000, devices for pressing bricks of cocaine, pill presses, a stolen vehicle, and two stolen generators with lights. Additional drugs, firearms and cash also were discovered during arrests of the defendants.

“Our office is committed to reducing illegal drugs and violent crime in every part of the Southern District, and that includes Dublin and Laurens County,” said U.S. Attorney Christine. “With our law enforcement partners, we will weed out these peddlers of poison who fuel a significant part of every community’s misery.” 

Those named in the indictment are:

  • Quaveris Leshaun Mims, a/k/a “Strong,” 48, of Dublin, Ga., charged with  Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Controlled Substances; Possession with Intent to Distribute Controlled Substances; Possession of Firearms in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime; and two counts of Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon;
  • Rodney Jarrod Denson, a/k/a “RD,” 43, of Dublin, Ga., charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Controlled Substances; Possession with Intent to Distribute Controlled Substances; Conspiracy to Possess Firearms in Furtherance of a Drug-Trafficking Crime; two counts of Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug-Trafficking Crime; and two counts of Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon;
  • Anthony Michael Denson, 48, of Dublin, Ga., charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Controlled Substances; Possession with Intent to Distribute Controlled Substances; and, Conspiracy to Possess Firearms in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime;
  • Nicholas Turner, 24, of East Dublin, Ga., charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Controlled Substances; and Conspiracy to Possess Firearms in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime;
  • Brandon Payne, a/k/a “Tre,” 25, of Dublin, Ga., charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Controlled Substances; Possession with Intent to Distribute Controlled Substances; Conspiracy to Possess Firearms in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime; and Possession of Firearms in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime;
  • Desergio Kates, a/k/a “Serg,” 25, of Dublin, Ga., charged with charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Controlled Substances; Possession with Intent to Distribute Controlled Substances; Conspiracy to Possess Firearms in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime; and Possession of Firearms in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime;
  • Constance Victoria Moore, 32, of Helena, Ga., charged with charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Controlled Substances; and,
  • Zandera Finney, 33, of Warner Robins, Ga., charged with charged with charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Controlled Substances.

“RD” Denson and Anthony Michael Denson are brothers; Brandon Payne and Desergio Kates are stepsons of “RD” Denson.  

The charges for Mims, RD Denson, Anthony Michael Denson, Kates and Payne carry penalties of up to life in prison; the charges for Turner, Moore, and Finney carry penalties of up to 20 years in prison on each count. Each of the defendants, if convicted, also would be subject to substantial fines and would serve a period of supervised release after completion of any prison sentence. There is no parole in the federal system.

“These indictments are a direct result of the dedicated efforts between local, state and federal law enforcement and the subsequent prosecution by the U.S. Attorney’s Office,” said Robert J. Murphy, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Atlanta Field Division. “The distribution of dangerous drugs continues to ravage many communities, but the Dublin community is safer because these defendants have been removed from the streets.”  

Criminal indictments contain only charges; defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

The case was investigated under the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF), the premier U.S. Department of Justice program to dismantle multi-jurisdictional drug trafficking organizations. Agencies involved in the investigation include the DEA; the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, Tobacco and Explosives (ATF); the FBI; the U.S. Postal Inspection Service; the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office; Ocmulgee Drug Task Force; the Twiggs County Sheriff’s Office; the Wilkinson County Sheriff’s Office; the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office; the Washington County Sheriff’s Office; the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office; and the Warner Robins Police Department, and is being prosecuted for the United States by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Patricia Rhodes and Henry W. Syms Jr.

 

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.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Contact: 
Barry L. Paschal, Public Affairs Officer: 912-652-4422
Press Release Number: 
01-20
Updated February 4, 2020