CLEVELAND - The FBI busted 30 people in what its calling a "large-scale heroin trafficking ring" that ran operations out of the east side of Cleveland and North Olmsted.
The 110-count indictment alleges the organization sometimes used violence to collect drug debts and control its territory. The ring used "stash houses" on East 99th Street in Cleveland and an apartment in North Olmsted across from the Great Northern Mall to sell the drugs, according to prosecutors.
Police dubbed the investigation "Operation Big Squeeze."
The U.S. Attorney's Office in Cleveland said the investigation initially started as a focus on one seller, Rayshaw Ligon, but led to a large scale operation that distributed heroin, cocaine, marijuana and crack cocaine in Cleveland, Chicago, Minnesota and California. Prosecutors said Ligon's main assistants were his father, two brothers, a cousin and his girlfriend -- all have been charged in the indictment.
According to the court filing, the organization also sometimes transported drugs by human "mules," who would ingest up to 30 balloons filled with heroin. They also allegedly used "testers," or addicts who sample the drug in order to tell the dealers the strength and purity of the heroin.
The 30 people charged were indicted for alleged actions between February through September 2010. Here is a listing of names of those facing charges in the bust:
- Rayshawn Ligon, aka "Dirty Ray," 30, of North Olmsted, Ohio
- Larry Neal, 39, of Chicago, Ill.
- Braulio Diaz, aka "Tony," 42, of Chicago, Ill.
- Dontoye Kevin Feelings, aka "Tyrone Dion Patrick," aka "Anthony," of Minneapolis, Minn.
- Travon Williams, aka "Little D," 29, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Van Herron, 29, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Ernest Harris, 58, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Divaughn Ligon, aka "Lou," of Cleveland, Ohio
- Leonard Cole, aka "Scooter," 26, of Cleveland Heights, Ohio
- Julius Carson Jr., aka "OG," 51 of Cleveland, Ohio
- Kyron Marlin, 35, of Euclid, Ohio
- Niakena Heard, aka "Kentae," 33, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Ivan Harris, aka "Michael Fannin," 33, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Terence Hester, 20, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Perry Avery Jr., 20, of East Cleveland, Ohio
- Shertarra Catron, aka "TT," 24, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Jason Morgan, aka "Booty," 30, of Cleveland, Ohio
- William Efford, 27, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Earl King, 31, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Darnell Haynes, aka "Fu-Fu," 20, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Michael Fason, aka "PT," 30, of Euclid, Ohio
- Leonard Young, aka "Snoop," 32, of Cleveland, Ohio
- James Henry, aka "Hurk," 28, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Vincent Price, 26, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Jamel McHaney, aka "Gangster Nate," 25, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Stetson White, aka "KT," 32, of Cleveland, Ohio
- Ruby Seagraves, 34, of Lakewood, Ohio
- Tekora Madden, aka "TK," 32, of Seven Hills, Ohio
- Ricardo Brashers, aka "Rico," 39, of Beachwood, Ohio
- Veronica Jordan, 31, of South Euclid, Ohio
All are facing charges of violating federal narcotics, firearms and money laundering laws.
During the investigation, prosecutors said more than a half kilogram of heroin, worth about $70,000, and thousands of dollars worth of marijuana were purchased or seized from the alleged dealers.
Read more details about how the group operated in the court filing (PDF): http://bit.ly/f0utjk
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