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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Arkansas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, June 19, 2015

Members of Drug Trafficking Organization Sentenced to Combined 46.5 Years in Federal Prison

            Fort Smith, Arkansas - Conner Eldridge, United States Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas, announced the final defendants tied to a large-scale drug trafficking organization that operated in the Fort Smith area were sentenced this week.  The Honorable P.K. Holmes, III presided over the sentencing hearings in the United States District Court in Fort Smith.

            U.S. Attorney Eldridge commented, “These defendants brought a significant amount of methamphetamine into the Western District of Arkansas where they sold and distributed it into our communities.  The drug trafficking organization responsible has now been dismantled, and its members have been held responsible for their actions.  We remain committed to working with our partners in law enforcement to identify and aggressively prosecute those who bring drugs and crime into our communities.”

            “Methamphetamine has the ability to destroy entire communities,” stated DEA Assistant Special Agent in Charge, David Downing.  “The victims are often children and families who live in neighborhoods where meth dealers pedal their poison.  This investigation is a prime example of law enforcement working together to halt those responsible for and profiting from the spread of this vicious drug.  DEA is proud to be a part of the law enforcement efforts that have helped free this area of these drug dealers who tried to take this community as their own,” said Downing.

            According to court records, as early as November of 2013, agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) learned that large quantities of methamphetamine were being distributed out of the Fort Smith area by a multi-state drug trafficking organization led by William Alexander.  During the course of the investigation agents made more than ten controlled buys and executed at least five search warrants, which resulted in the seizure of approximately nine pounds of methamphetamine.

            The defendants were sentenced as follows:

            William Joseph Alexander, aka “Weenie”, age 33, of Fort Smith, Arkansas, was previously sentenced to two hundred and ten months in prison followed by five years of supervised release on one count of Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Distribute.

            Randall Jernigan, age 31, of Fort Smith, Arkansas, was previously sentenced to eighty four months in prison followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Distribution of Methamphetamine.

            Bobby Chanthavong, age 32, of Fort Smith, Arkansas, was sentenced to thirty seven months in prison followed by five years of supervised release on one count of Possession of Methamphetamine with the Intent to Distribute.

            Blake Bronson Wright, age 28, of Van Buren, Arkansas, was sentenced to twenty four months followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Distribution of Methamphetamine.

            Gary Nathaniel Rogers, age 29, of Huntington, Arkansas, was sentenced to twenty one months in prison followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Distribution of Methamphetamine.

            Gentry Alan Rainwater Sr., age 55, of Fort Smith, Arkansas, was sentenced to fifty seven months in prison followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Distribute.

            Kevin Dale Hatley, age 35, of Fort Smith, Arkansas, was sentenced to thirty three months in prison followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Distribution of Methamphetamine.

            Joshua Wade Russell, age 30, of Jonesboro, Arkansas, was sentenced to twenty one months in prison followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Distribution of Methamphetamine.

            Larry Dale Batt, aka “Spooky”, age 32, of Fort Smith, Arkansas, was sentenced to twenty one months in prison followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Distribution of Methamphetamine.

            Theresa Susan Thompson, age 51, of Fort Smith, Arkansas, was sentenced to fifteen months in prison followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Distribute.

            Rosa Sharon, age 50, of Fort Smith, Arkansas, was sentenced to thirty seven months in prison followed by one year of supervised release on one count of Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine.

            These cases were investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Fort Smith Police Department.  Assistant United States Attorney Clay Fowlkes prosecuted the cases for the United States.

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            Related court documents may be found on the Public Access to Electronic Records website @ www.pacer.gov

 

Updated June 19, 2015