A 30-count federal indictment was unsealed charging 13 people with participating in a multi-state conspiracy to distribute heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine, a conspiracy which was controlled by an inmate inside an Ohio prison, law enforcement officials said.
Indicted are: Fernando Auces, 50, currently residing at Grafton Correctional Institution; Ricardo Morales-Almazan, 32, currently residing at FCI Big Spring in Texas; Alejandro Sanchez, 33, of Toledo; Roberto Agapito Vallejo-Becerra, 50, currently residing at East Hidalgo Detention Center in Texas; Alexander Gonzales, 38, currently residing at Southern Ohio Correctional Institution (Lucasville); Tammy Gibson, 40, of Akron; Javier Jimenez, 39, of Toledo; Noe Reyes, 33, currently residing at FCI Lucero in Alabama; Randy Koelblin, 39, of Cincinnati; Jasmine Reyes, 29, of Omaha, Neb.; Jenneth De La Rosa, 58, of Toledo; Daniel Ulis, 40, of Toledo and Anthony King, 41, currently residing at Ross Correctional Institution (Chillicothe).
All 13 people were indicted in Count 1 with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine.
Auces, while an inmate at Allen Correctional Institute in Lima, Ohio, with the assistance of Almazan and others, controlled a multi-state drug operation by communicating through a contraband cell phone with others outside the prison to arrange the delivery and sale of heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine, according to the indictment.
Between 2010 and 2014, Auces and others arranged for deliveries of large amounts of heroin to Ohio from suppliers in Indiana and Texas. He recruited friends and relatives, including Almazan, De La Rose, Sanchez, Uliks, King, Jimenez and Koelblin to receive and distribute the heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine to Cleveland, Toledo and elsewhere, according to the indictment.
Auces, as part of the conspiracy, agreed with Gonzales, an inmate at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville, Ohio, to share customers and drug suppliers. Auces arranged for Gonzales to distribute drugs to various locations throughout Ohio, including Cleveland, Akron/ Canton, Dayton and Cincinnati, according to the indictment.
"This was a major interstate drug ring run from inside a prison cell," said Steven M. Dettelbach, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. "Thanks to the hard work of our law enforcement partners those who were helping this drug trafficker from the outside will soon be joining him behind bars. We will continue to work together to reduce the supply of heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine."
"Refuge from law enforcement can't be found behind a prison wall," said Stephen D. Anthony, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Cleveland Office. "The Northern Ohio Law Enforcement Task Force will continue to bring to justice drug dealers that distribute pois0n to our streets, no matter where they reside."
"Our collective enforcement efforts in this investigation have effectively shut down an operation that allegedly funneled copious amounts of illegal drugs into this community," Marlon Miller, Special Agent in Charge of HSI Detroit, which covers Michigan and Ohio. "These charges announced today are the culmination of an extensive multi-agency approach to combating drug trafficking organizations."
Counts 2 through 7 are substantive counts of distribution of methamphetamine or heroin. Counts 8 through 28 deal with the use of communication facility to facilitate a felony. Counts 29 and 30 deal with traveling interstate to distribute heroin. The indictment also seeks to forfeit $37,050 in cash seized from a storage locker in Toledo on April 4, 2014, according to the indictment.