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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, May 21, 2021

Operation Second Wave Update: Four Defendants Appear in Federal Court

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Four men charged as a result of a long-term investigation known as “Second Wave” appeared in federal court this week.  Jason Michael Terrell, 37, of Mount Carbon was sentenced to 14 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute more than 500 grams of methamphetamine.  Ronald Lee Thomas, III, 29,  of  Charleston pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute marijuana.  Roger Jarea Drake, 32, of Charleston pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine, and Craig Redman, 42, of Kimberly pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. 

According to court records and statements made at plea and sentencing hearings in the case, the defendants were part of a drug trafficking organization operating in Charleston and the upper Kanawha Valley from at least August 2018 until the federal arrests on August 26, 2020.  Terrell was identified as a multi-pound methamphetamine dealer operating in and around Montgomery. Larry Martin and Roger Drake were multi-pound methamphetamine dealers operating in and around Charleston.  Martin also distributed large quantities of marijuana during the time of the conspiracy.  Terrell and Drake, accompanied by Tonya Simerly traveled to Columbus, Ohio in March 2020 where they met Rashawn Miller who connected them with a supplier who sold them approximately two pounds of methamphetamine.  Martin had other sources of supply and provided methamphetamine or marijuana to Drake and Thomas, among others.  Terrell supplied methamphetamine to dealers in the upper Kanawha Valley including Craig Redman, Carol Belton, and Jimmy Coleman.

When they are sentenced in September, Thomas faces up to five years, Redman faces up to 20 years, and Drake faces 10 years to life in federal prison.

Martin, Belton, and Miller have entered guilty pleas to conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and are scheduled to be sentenced later this year.  Sammy Joe Fragale, Sr. pled guilty in December 2019 to distribution of methamphetamine and is scheduled for sentencing in June.  Jimmy Coleman was sentenced last month to three years in federal prison. Gregory Woods was sentenced in February to 184 months after pleading guilty to possession with intent to distribute cocaine and violating the terms of his federal supervised release.

Tonya Simerly and Steven Bumpus are scheduled to plead guilty to their roles in the drug trafficking organization next week.

Acting United States Attorney Lisa G. Johnston made the announcement and commended the excellent investigative work of all the law enforcement agencies involved in the case.  The long-term investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), the Central West Virginia Drug Task Force (CWVDTF), the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Department, the Charleston Police Department, the Metropolitan Drug Enforcement Network Team (MDENT) and the United States Postal Service-Office of Inspector General.

Senior United States District Judge David A. Faber presided over the hearing. Assistant United States Attorney Joshua C. Hanks is handling 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 Nos. 2:21-cr-00045 (Miller), 2:20-cr-00153 (Woods), 2:20-cr-00184 (Fragale Sr.), 2:20-cr-00176 (Fragale, Jr.), 2:21-cr-00064 (Bumpus), and 2:20-cr-00154 (Terrell et al).

 

 

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Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Updated May 21, 2021