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Press Release

Three Cincinnati Men Charged in Narcotics Conspiracy

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Ohio

CINCINNATI – A federal grand jury has charged three Cincinnati men in a narcotics conspiracy punishable by at least 10 years up to life in prison in an indictment returned here February 6 and unsealed today.


Derek Ragan (Duke), 49, Anthony Sanderson (Pea Head), 63, and Lawrence Bell (LB), 66, are charged with conspiring to collectively distribute more than 400 grams of fentanyl. 


Benjamin C. Glassman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Todd Wickerham, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Cincinnati Division, and Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot K. Isaac announced the charges, which followed the extensive investigation by the FBI’s Safe Streets Task Force.


According to the indictment, fentanyl and other drugs were brought into the Cincinnati area where they were further processed, cut, combined, packaged and stored prior to distribution. The co-conspirators allegedly used “Duke’s Place”  on Oliver Street in Cincinnati to distribute the illegal opioids.


The indictment also charges eight counts of distributing fentanyl, one count of possessing fentanyl, one count of using a premises for drug distribution and one count charging Ragan with illegally possessing a firearm.

Agents seized more than $10,000 in cash, additional narcotics, and the firearm from two residences while executing search warrants in this case on November 16, 2018.


Conspiracy to distribute more than 400 grams or more of fentanyl is a federal crime punishable by 10 years up to life in prison. Distributing and possessing with the intent to distribute 40 grams or more of fentanyl are crimes that carry a potential sentence of five to 40 years in prison. Operating a drug premises is punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Possessing a firearm as a convicted felon is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.


U.S. Attorney Glassman commended the investigation of this case by the FBI and Cincinnati Police, as well as Assistant United States Attorney Karl P. Kadon and Criminal Chief Kenneth L. Parker, who are prosecuting the case.


An indictment merely contains allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law.

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Updated February 26, 2019

Drug Trafficking