New defendant pleads guilty in conspiracy involving $44 million in drug proceeds laundered to Mexico through local cell phone store fronts
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Chris R. Cook, 45, of Lancaster, Ohio, was arrested this morning on charges related to distributing methamphetamine.
He was charged by criminal complaint with possessing and conspiring to possess with the intent to distribute in excess of 50 grams of the drug.
Benjamin C. Glassman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Timothy J. Plancon, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Angela L. Byers, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Cincinnati Division, Lancaster Police Chief Adam Pillar and members of the Fairfield Hocking Major Crimes Unit announced the charges.
According to the affidavit filed in support of the complaint, law enforcement received several citizen complaints regarding suspected drug trafficking at Cook’s residence on S. Cedar Avenue and his business on Welsh Avenue in Lancaster.
Investigators established surveillance on the properties and observed activity consistent with drug trafficking.
During a coordinated traffic stop, Fairfield County Sheriff’s Deputies stopped a vehicle that had been present at residence on S. Cedar Avenue and discovered six grams of crystal meth. Law enforcement officials also conducted several controlled purchases of meth, both at Cook’s residence and business.
Cook had entrances to his residence barricaded as well as surveillance cameras on the property. When he was arrested, agents discovered him in possession of a bullet-proof vest and additional methamphetamine.
Cook is scheduled to appear in federal court today at 1:30pm before U.S. Magistrate Judge Kimberly A. Jolson.
U.S. Attorney Glassman commended the investigation of this case by law enforcement and Assistant United States Attorney Timothy Prichard, who is prosecuting the case.
A criminal complaint merely contains allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law.
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