21 people are now behind bars facing numerous drug, gun, and money laundering charges.
The charges involved distribution and possession with the intent to distribute more than 1,000 kilograms of marijuana, distribution and possession with the intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine, distribution and possession with the intent to distribute oxycodone, and conspiracy to launder money, within the Eastern District of Tennessee and elsewhere.
Those charged in the indictment are:
1. William McMahan, Jr., 35, of Newport, Tenn.;
2. Buford Rogers, 65, of Knoxville, Tenn.;
3. Lee Sharp, 56, of Sharps Chapel, Tenn.;
4. Rodney Settles, 47, of Mt. Juliet, Tenn.;
5. Audrey Jinks, 36, of Newport, Tenn.:
6. Richard Black, 45, of Cosby, Tenn.;.
7. Joyce Roberts, 44, of Newport, Tenn.;
8. Victor Loveday, Sr., 57, of Maryville, Tenn.;
9. Danny Richardson, 28, of New Tazewell, Tenn.;
10. Robbie Langford, 30,of Knoxville, Tenn.;
11. Charles Parker, 35, of Powell, Tenn.;
12. Dallas Parsley, 70, of East Bernstadt, Ky.;
13. Billy Gibson, 45, of Newport, Tenn.;
14. Jayson Cox, 35, of Maryville, Tenn.;
15. Victor Loveday, Jr., 31, of Maryville, Tenn.;
16. Monica Denton, 28, of Newport, Tenn.;
17. Gary Bridges, 51, of Sharps Chapel, Tenn.;
18. Terry Miller, 57, of Hartford, Tenn.;
19. Melonie Montanaro, 25, of Newport, Tenn.;
20. Brandon Miller, 25, of Newport, Tenn.; and,
21. Rodney Tullock, 48, of Afton, Tenn.
If convicted, the defendants face a mandatory term of 10 years in prison, a fine of $10,000,000.00, a term of supervised release of at least five years, and mandatory court assessments. In addition, three of the firearms charges carry a prison term of five years which, by federal law, is imposed consecutively to the sentence for the drug trafficking offense.
A trial date is expected to be set at a hearing in U.S. District Court on November 1, 2011.
The indictment is the result of a joint investigation between the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and Federal Bureau of Investigation. The Tennessee Fourth Judicial Drug Task Force, Hamblen County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee Fifth Judicial Drug Task Force, Blount County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee Highway Patrol, Morristown HIDTA office, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives also provided invaluable assistance during the course of the investigation.