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Press Release

Operation Second Wave Update: Final Five Defendants in Major Federal Drug Conspiracy Investigation Sentenced in Federal Court

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

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Five defendants charged as a result of a long-term investigation known as “Second Wave” were sentenced this week in federal court for their roles in a conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and marijuana. Roger Jarea Drake, 32, of Charleston, and Craig Edward Redman, 42, of Kimberly, were sentenced to 151 and 46 months in prison, respectively, for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.  Tonya Nicole Simerly, 36, of Montgomery, was sentenced to 24 months in prison for interstate travel in aid of a racketeering enterprise.  Ronald Lee Thomas III, 29, of Sissonville, was sentenced to two years of probation for conspiracy to distribute marijuana, and Steven Matthew Bumpus, 32, of Charleston, was sentenced to three years of probation for theft of mail by a United States Postal Service employee.

More than a dozen individuals were charged in federal court as a result of Operation “Second Wave,” a long-term investigation of a drug trafficking ring involved in the distribution of methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin,  marijuana, and THC products. According to court documents, Jason Michael Terrell, Larry  Terrell Martin, and Roger Jarea Drake were principally involved in bringing the drugs into the Southern District of West Virginia from out-of-state suppliers. Carol Belton, Jimmy Lee Coleman, and Craig Edward Redman distributed methamphetamine to street-level dealers and users.  Joe Fragale, Sr. and Joe Fragale II distributed methamphetamine and heroin.  Ronald Lee Thomas III distributed marijuana. Gregory Eugene Woods distributed cocaine. Tonya Nicole Simerly drove to Columbus, Ohio with Terrell and Drake where they obtained methamphetamine through Rashawn Akmed Miller who acted as a “middle-man.” Bumpus was employed as a U.S. Postal Service mail carrier who delivered drug packages to Martin that were addressed to fictitious individuals along Bumpus’ route.

In previous hearings, the court sentenced Terrell to 14 years in prison, Martin to 151 months in prison, Woods to 160 months in prison, Joe Fragale, Sr. to 120 months in prison, Miller to 70 months in prison, Fragale II to 42 months in prison, Coleman to 36 months in prison, and Belton to 18 months in prison.   

Acting United States Attorney Lisa G. Johnston made the announcement and commended the investigative work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Central West Virginia Drug Task Force, the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), the United States Postal Service – Office of Inspector General (USPS-OIG), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO), the Metropolitan Drug Enforcement Network Team (MDENT) and the Charleston Police Department.

Senior United States District Judge David A. Faber imposed the sentences. Assistant United States Attorney Joshua C. Hanks handled the prosecution.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia. Related court documents and information can be found on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:20-cr-00154.

Updated September 8, 2021

Drug Trafficking