Seventeen Charged in Multi-State Drug Trafficking Ring in “Operation Clear Cut”
Jackson, TN – Seventeen individuals have been charged in federal court with operating a multi-state drug trafficking organization in West Tennessee, Arkansas, and Mississippi. D. Michael Dunavant, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee, announced the unsealing of the federal complaint today.
The following individuals were charged with one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and were arrested during a law enforcement takedown operation this week:
• David Bone, 54, of Dyer County
• Stacey Caksackkar, 52, of Crockett County
• Troy Chew, 45, of Blytheville, Arkansas
• Colby Criswell, 28, of Gibson County
• Thomas Dacus, 43, of Crockett County
• Stacy Edwards, 31, of Dyer County
• Jason Glisson, 42, of Dyer County
• Frederick Johnson, 36, of Meridian, Mississippi
• Crystal Lee, 37, of Crockett County
• Draper Lee, 39, of Crockett County
• Nicholas Grant Mealer, 21, of Crockett County
• Tammy Mealer, 50, of Crockett County
• Madison Middlebrook, 21, of Blytheville, Ark.
• Michael Newson, 35, of Senatobia, Miss.
• Shawn Sherry Overton, 45, of Dyer County
• Shawn Riley, 41, of Dyer County
• Ronald Solomon, 40, of Dyer County
Additionally, Draper Lee, Middlebrook, and Solomon were charged with being felons in possession of a firearm. The takedown was part of "Operation Clear Cut," a multi-agency federal task force responsible for curtailing organized crime and narcotics in West Tennessee. According to information from the criminal complaint, the organization was responsible for distributing more than 70 pounds of methamphetamine in West Tennessee and elsewhere. In addition to the seizure of narcotics, law enforcement seized more than $31,000 in U.S. currency and 8 firearms during the course of the investigation.
For count one, the defendants face possible sentences of up to 20 years in federal prison, followed by 6 years supervised release and a fine of $2 million. For those defendants charged with being felons in possession of a firearm, the additional possible sentence is up to 10 years in federal prison, followed by 3 years supervised release and a fine of $250,000. There is no parole in the federal system.
The case will be presented to a federal grand jury at a later date to consider an indictment against the suspects.
U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said, "West Tennessee is a major logistics hub for the country, and drug trafficking organizations transport and distribute large quantities of drugs into and throughout our communities. We must use every available resource to disrupt and dismantle these conspiracies, and hold them accountable for distributing poisonous illegal drugs that cause addiction, injury, and death. We commend the outstanding investigative work of our federal, state, and local law enforcement partners in this important case involving significant seizures of dangerous narcotics."
"The charges and arrests today were only possible due to the cooperation of local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies working together to identify and target drug traffickers in our ongoing mission to ensure the safety of our communities in the tri-state area," said Acting Special Agent in Charge Jermicha L. Fomby of the Memphis Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. "The FBI, with our fellow law enforcement partners, are committed to ensuring that there is no safe haven for criminal activity and that those who seek to sell drugs and engage in violence know that we are coming for them."
This case was investigated by the FBI Memphis Safe Streets Task Force, Jackson Resident Agency, Dyersburg Police Department, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI), and the Crockett County Sheriff’s Office. The Lexington Police Department, Tennessee Highway Patrol, 24th Judicial District Drug Task Force, Jackson Police Department, Selmer Police Department, Bolivar Police Department, Hardeman County Sheriff’s Office, Milan Police Department, and the West Tennessee Drug Task Force also participated in the arrest operation.
The charges and allegations contained in the complaint are merely accusations of criminal conduct, not evidence. Each charged defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, and convicted through due process of law.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Matt Wilson is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.