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Justice News

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

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

U.S. Attorney Minkler highlights continuity of operations during the appropriations lapse

The USAO-SDIN recognizes the stalwart dedication demonstrated by Justice Department employees and investigative agents to serve the public during the appropriations lapse.

Indianapolis – Josh J. Minkler, the United States Attorney, announced today that operations at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Southern District of Indiana (USAO-SDIN) continued during the appropriations lapse and recognized the important contributions made by USAO staff and investigative agents. The significant case-related accomplishments below, among others, underline the government’s dedication to mission as described by the United States Attorney in the USAO Strategic Plan.

  • United States v. Jimmy Mitchell. Mitchell, a Boonville man found guilty of production and possession of sexually explicit material involving a minor following trial in August 2018, was sentenced to 40-years’ imprisonment. The collaborative investigation was led by the Evansville FBI Safe Streets Task Force Child Exploitation Section in partnership with the Warrick County Sheriff’s Office. Prosecution by Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) Kyle Sawa.
  • United States v. Neiko Currie and United States v. Howard Sawyer. Two inmates at the U.S. Bureau of Prisons sentenced to 30 and 120 months’ imprisonment, respectively, for possession of contraband (Currie) and assaulting a federal officer (Sawyer). Prosecution by AUSA James Warden.
  • United States v. Bradley Gulledge. Federal charges including being a felon in possession of firearm, to-wit: a Taurus 9mm handgun, a Ruger 40 caliber handgun, model SR40, a MAADI AK47 semiautomatic rifle, and the distribution of 50 or more grams of a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine. Prosecution by AUSA Pamela Domash.
  • United States v. Austin Greene. Federal charges including conspiracy to steal firearms from a Federal Firearms Licensee and being an unlawful user of controlled substances in possession of a firearm, to-wit: a Beretta 9mm semiautomatic handgun. Prosecution by AUSA Pamela Domash. 
  • United States v. Teria Anderson. Anderson was convicted following a trial by jury in the Indianapolis Division of the United States Attorney’s Office, of being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm, to-wit: a Superior Arms S-15 S.56 rifle, a Marlin lever-action rifle, a Smith & Wesson .40 caliber handfun, following a trial by jury. Prosecution by Senior Litigation Counsel (SLC) and Lead Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) Attorney Bradley Blackington and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric Babbs.
  • United States v. Sevon Thomas. Thomas was convicted following a trial by jury in the New Albany Division of the United States Attorney’s Office, charged with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine and Carrying a Firearm During and in Relation to a Drug Trafficking Crime. Prosecution by AUSAs Lauren Wheatley and Frank Dahl.
  • United States v. Quinones. Quinones pled guilty to Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute 500+ grams of methamphetamine in violation of 21 U.S.C. §§ 841 and 846, and to laundering monetary instruments, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1956. No sentencing date has been set yet. Prosecution by AUSA Michelle Brady.
  • United States v. Craig Nichols. Nichols, the Building Commissioner for the city of Muncie, was sentenced to 24-months’ imprisonment and was ordered to pay $217,500 in restitution to the City of Muncie, Muncie Sanitary District, and Dannar Construction.
  • United States v. Hector Castro-Aguirre, Four defendants were sentenced for their involvement in a multi-state conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and cocaine. Hector Castro-Aguirre and Rafael Rojas-Reyes, both members of the Sinaloa Cartel, were sentenced to life imprisonment under the Continuing Criminal Enterprise statute, which is also known as the “drug kingpin statute.”  John Ramirez-Prado, a drug courier for the organization, was sentenced to 240 months’ imprisonment. Jose Manuel Carrillo-Tremillo, the leader of a cocaine trafficking cell operating in Reading, Pennsylvania and Queens, New York, was sentenced to 215 months’ imprisonment. Prosecution by SLC and Lead OCDETF Attorney Bradley Blackington.
  • United States v. Richard Conn. Conn was sentenced to 24-months’ imprisonment following his conviction for possession of and manufacturing a homemade silencer, in violation of the National Firearms Act (NFA). Prosecution by AUSA Jeff Preston.
  • United States v. Vines. Vines was convicted on January 28, 2019 following a trial by jury in the Indianapolis Division of the United States Attorney’s Office. Charges involve sex trafficking of a minor child, transportation of that child across state lines for the purpose of trafficking her, as well as involvement in an organization that promoted the prostitution of other women. Prosecution by AUSAs Kristina Korobov and Lawrence Hilton.
  • United States v. Jorge Tadeo, et al. and United States v. Cristian Gutierrez-Alvarez, et al. Twenty defendants have been indicted for Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 846. Prosecution by SLC and Lead OCDETF Attorney Bradley Blackington.
  • The USAO also announces that 205 defendants were prosecuted in Indianapolis under the umbrella of the Department’s reinvigorated Project Safe Neighborhoods 2.0 initiative. The Drug and Violent Crime Unit who handled these prosecutions is led by Deputy Chief Barry Glickman and is comprised of the following AUSAs: William McCoskey, Jeff Preston, Peter Blackett, Pamela Domash, Lawrence Hilton, Jeremy Morris, Kyle Sawa, Amanda Kester, and Abhishek Kambli.

An Information or Indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Updated February 5, 2019