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Press Release

Branchland man pleads guilty to trafficking drugs from Florida to West Virginia

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

Charleston, W.Va. – United States Attorney Booth Goodwin announced that William Harrison Meade, 47, of Branchland, West Virginia, plead guilty in federal court in Charleston today to conspiring to distribute oxycodone.  During his plea hearing, Meade admitted that from January of 2010 through January 11, 2011, he conspired with individuals in Florida and Lincoln County, West Virginia, to distribute oxycodone, also known as “Roxycodone.”   Meade also admitted that he laundered the proceeds of the drug sales through a bank account controlled by his associate in West Virginia for withdrawal in Florida in an effort to conceal the source of the cash, the source of the pills, and the location of the drug proceeds.

Meade admitted that beginning in January of 2010 and continuing until January of 2011, Lester Taylor acquired oxycodone pills in Florida and used various methods, including shipment via common carrier and personal trips to West Virginia to deliver the oxycodone pills to Lincoln County for distribution by Meade.  After Meade sold the oxycodone pills, he deposited the drug proceeds into bank accounts in Barboursville and Huntington.  Following the deposits in West Virginia, Taylor or others acting on his behalf withdrew the money in Florida.

From May 17, 2010 through January 8, 2011, Taylor sent 15 priority overnight packages containing oxycodone pills to Meade at his home in Branchland. Law enforcement intercepted the last package on January 8, 2011, which contained 1000 30 mg oxycodone pills.

From October 13, 2010 through December 3, 2010, Meade deposited $149,500.00 in drug proceeds into Taylor’s Fifth Third Bank account at the Huntington, West Virginia branch.

Meade faces up to 20 years imprisonment when he is sentenced on January 20, 2016.

Lester Taylor previously entered a guilty plea to conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and conspiracy to money launder and faces up to 40 years imprisonment when he is sentenced on October 19, 2015.

The West Virginia State Police, the IRS-CID, and the Metropolitan Drug Enforcement Network Team were in charge of the investigation.  Assistant United States Attorney Monica D. Coleman is handling the prosecution.

These cases were prosecuted as part of an ongoing effort led by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia to combat the illicit sale and misuse of prescription drugs and heroin.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office, joined by federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, is committed to aggressively pursuing and shutting down illegal pill trafficking, eliminating open air drug markets, and curtailing the spread of opiate painkillers and heroin in communities across the Southern District. 

Updated September 2, 2015

Drug Trafficking