STATESBORO, GA (WTOC) - A federal indictment issued in June by a sitting Grand Jury in Savannah was unsealed.
The indictment revealed the names of 14 South Georgia residents charged with conspiring to traffick methamphetamine, heroin, oxycodone and other drugs. This comes after the majority of the defendants appeared in federal court for the first time in Statesboro last week.
If convicted of the drug trafficking conspiracy charge, the defendants face a maximum of 20 years in prison and a potential $1 million fine.
The federal indictment charged the following 14 defendants in this case:
Jeramie Thomas Leslie, 31, of Guyton.
John Christopher Paulson, 40, of Rincon.
William Preston Gibbs, 22, of Glennville.
Jeremiah Jones Richardson, 29, of Statesboro.
Jason Todd Smith, 43, of Fleming.
Jeremy Nicholas Taylor, 27, of Ellabell.
Samori Jodan Smokes, 35, of Eden.
Scott Lamont Pointer, 35, of Ellabell.
Timothy Wayne Davis, 49, of Ellabell.
Christopher Gage Floyd, 21, of Pembroke.
Kenneth Jordan Lane, 24, of Pembroke.
Jeffery James Taylor, 28, of Ellabell.
Casandra Rae Hendrix, 24, of Ellabell.
Kayla Estell Rericha, 21, of Rincon.
The charges resulted from a joint federal-state investigation by the DEA, GBI, the Bryan County County Sheriff's Office, the Effingham County Sheriff's Office, the Chatham-Savannah Counter Narcotics Team, the Statesboro-Bulloch Crime Suppression Team, the Richmond Hill Police Department and the Pembroke Police Department. Assistance was also provided by the Rincon Police Department and the United States Marshal's Service.
U.S. Attorney Edward Tarver emphasizes that indictments are only accusations and are not evidence of guilt. The Defendants are entitled to a fair trial, during which it will be the Government's burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Assistant United States Attorney Charlie Bourne is prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.
For additional information, please contact First Assistant United States Attorney James D. Durham at 912.201.2547.