Southern West Virginia Anti-Pill Sweep Continues

Updated 6 years ago From a Release by U.S. Attorney's Office for Southern District of WV

 

BLUEFIELD, W.Va. – U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin today  announced that 21 individuals have been indicted for selling powerful  prescription painkillers.  The indictments were unsealed following the  arrest of each defendant and their subsequent initial appearances in U.S.  District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia.

 

The charges against each defendant have been brought as a  part of the Bluefield Pill Initiative, a concerted  attack by federal, state, and local government on the illegal  distribution of prescription drugs in the southern region of West  Virginia.  The initiative was announced by U.S. Attorney Goodwin in June  2011.

"Prescription drug abuse has ravaged families and  communities across the country. Southern West  Virginia has seen too many people fall victim to  this plague," said U.S. Attorney Goodwin.

Goodwin continued, “This round of prosecutions reaffirms our  commitment to the Bluefield Pill Initiative and our resolve to put pill pushers  out of business."

The following individuals were indicted:

Carolos Renaldo Ivy, 33, of Princeton, Mercer County, W.Va.,  was charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone, three counts of  distribution of oxycodone and one count of using a telephone to commit a drug  crime;

Aaron O. Gamble, 30, of Princeton, Mercer County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone, one count of distribution of  oxycodone and one count of using a telephone to commit a drug crime;

Eric Lee Flack, 34, of Bluefield, Mercer County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone, one count of distribution of  oxycodone and three counts of using a telephone to commit a drug crime;

Ansel William Ponder, 22, of Bluefield, Mercer County, W.Va.,  was charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone, one count of distribution  of oxycodone and three counts of using a telephone to commit a drug crime;

Danny Lee Decker, 42, of Mullens, Wyoming County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone, two counts of distribution of  oxycodone, one count of aiding and abetting the distribution of oxycodone and  three counts of using a telephone to commit a drug crime;

Joni Earlene Rash, 42, of Princeton, Mercer County, W.Va.,  was charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone, one count of distribution  of oxycodone and three counts of using a telephone to commit a drug crime;

Ralph Ray Cantley, 54, of Matheny, Wyoming County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone, one count of using a telephone  to commit a drug crime and one count of maintaining a place for the purpose of  distributing and using oxycodone;

Kathy Burchett, 38, Welch, McDowell County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and three counts of using a  telephone to commit a drug crime;

Elizabeth Ann Stewart, 30, 0f Matheny, Wyoming County, W.Va.,  was charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and one count of oxycodone;

Tonya Lynn Goode, 35, Matheny, Wyoming County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and one count of distribution  of oxycodone;

Anthony Lee Madison, 23, of Bluefield, Va., was charged with  conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and three counts of using a telephone to  commit a drug crime;

Edgar Junior Ponce, 32, of Oceana, Wyoming County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and three counts of using a  telephone to commit a drug crime;

Laken Nicole Myers, 25, of Welch, McDowell County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and three counts of using a  telephone to commit a drug crime;

Randall Ray Parks, 51, of Welch, McDowell County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and three counts of using a  telephone to commit a drug crime;

Lori Megan Falls, 29, of Princeton, Mercer County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and two counts of using a  telephone to commit a drug crime;

Eric M. Tiller, 41, of Princeton, Mercer County, W.Va., was  charged with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and three counts of using a  telephone to commit a drug crime;

Matthew M. Pigg, 27, of Montcalm, Mercer County, W.Va., was  charged with possession with intent to distribute hydromorphone, a powerful  prescription painkiller commonly known as Dilaudid; 

Jennifer Marie Farley, 29, of Princeton, Mercer County,  W.Va., was charged with three counts of distribution of hydromorphone;

Kevin Eugene Petty, 36, of Bluefield, Mercer County, W.Va.,  was charged with three counts of distribution of hydromorphone;

Rickey David Coburn, II, 26, of Princeton, Mercer County,  W.Va., was charged with conspiracy to distribute hydromorphone and five counts  of distribution of hydromorphone;

Lakeisha Danell Howze, 27, of Princeton, Mercer County,  W.Va., was charged with conspiracy to distribute hydromorphone and distribution  of hydromorphone. 

An indictment is merely an accusation and the defendants are  presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a  court of law.  If convicted, each defendant faces up to 20 years in prison  and a $1 million fine.

The Bluefield Pill Initiative  is a collaborative, multi-agency regional law enforcement effort designed to  halt prescription drug trafficking specifically in Mercer, McDowell, and  Wyoming counties.  The Bluefield Pill Initiative is led by the Southern  Regional Drug and Violent Crime Task Force which is made up of the West  Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Sheriffs’ Departments  of Mercer, McDowell and Wyoming County, as well as the Bluefield and Princeton  Police Departments. 

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