ATF

Sample Block


Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

99 N.E. 4 Street
Miami, Florida 33132

(305) 961-9001

www.justice.gov/usao/lae

For Immediate Release

February 18, 2009

Jim Letten, United States Attorney

Contact: Kathy English

(504) 680-3068

(504) 589-4978 (fax)

15 Indicted on Federal Gun and Drug Charges Arrested in Early Morning Roundup

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA — Individuals facing federal indictments for various gun and drug charges were arrested earlier today during a roundup conducted by Special Agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and Troopers with the Louisiana State Police, with the assistance of Special Agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Officers of the New Orleans Police Department and the Gulfcoast HIDTA, announced U. S. Attorney Jim Letten and ATF Special Agent in Charge David G. Harper.

Specifically, 15 individuals were indicted by Federal Grand Juries for various federal firearm and narcotics violations. The majority of those individuals have, at the time of this release, been arrested and are in custody. The federal indictments which remained sealed by order of the U. S. District Court, were unsealed this morning in order to facilitate the arrests.

Last year, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) commenced a six-month undercover investigation named “Operation Collateral Damage” which, using ATF Special Agents and Louisiana State Police Troopers, as well as DEA Special Agents, produced a successful investigation which resulted in the identification, indictment, and arrests of firearms and narcotics offenders int the area. During the ongoing undercover investigation, ATF and LSP identified subjects by relying on a combination of investigative tools, and were successful in purchasing 20 firearms and various quantities of illegal narcotics. The suspects arrested have a total of 32 prior felony convictions. Funding of this long-term undercover operation was largely provided by the Federal High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) program.

  1. VINCENT HENDERSON, age 34, a resident of New Orleans, Louisiana, was indicted on January 22, 2009 in a seven-count indictment for distribution of marijuana, heroin, and crack cocaine. HENDERSON faces a maximum term of imprisonment of twenty (20) years, a fine of $2,000,000.00 and at least three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Liz Privitera.

  2. PHILLIP WASHINGTON, age 23, a resident of New Orleans, Louisiana, was indicted on January 15, 2009 in a three-count indictment for distribution of crack cocaine. WASHINGTON faces a minimum term of imprisonment of five (5) years and a maximum term of imprisonment of forty (40) years, a fine of $2,000,000.00 and at least four (4) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Liz Privitera.

  3. MICHAEL DESHAWN BADON age 31, a resident of New Orleans, Louisiana, was indicted on January 15, 2009 in a one-count indictment for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. If convicted, BADON faces a minimum term of imprisonment of ten (10) years of imprisonment, a fine of up to $250,000 and a maximum of three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Christopher Cox.

  4. TORY T. WILLIAMS, a/k/a “Tim Martin” and a/k/a “T”, age 31, a resident of New Orleans, Louisiana, was charged in a two-count indictment on January 23, 2009 for distribution of over five (5) grams of cocaine base or “crack”. If convicted, WILLIAMS faces under a maximum term of forty (40) years of imprisonment with a minimum term of (5) years imprisonment, a $2,000,000 fine, at least four (4) years supervised release following any term of imprisonment and a $100 special assessment fee as to each count. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Edward J. Rivera of the Violent Crime Unit.

  5. COURTNEY T. SEVERE, a/k/a “Fuse”, 38, a resident of New Orleans, Louisiana, was charged in a three-count indictment on January 23, 2009 for distribution of cocaine base or “crack”. If convicted, SEVERE faces a maximum term of life imprisonment with a minimum term of ten (10) years imprisonment, a $4,000,000 fine, at least five (5) years supervised release and a $100 special assessment fee as to the distribution of more than 50 grams of cocaine base or “crack”; and as to the two counts charging distributing more than 5 grams but less than 50 grams of crack, the defendant faces a maximum term of forty (40) years of imprisonment with a minimum term of five (5) years imprisonment, a $2,000,000 fine, at least four (4) years supervised release and a $100 special assessment fee. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Edward J. Rivera.

  6. MARKELL LEBLANC, age 25, KIM M. JONES, age 48, and KEVIN A. ALLEN, age 27, all residents of New Orleans, Louisiana, were charged in a nineteen-count indictment on January 23, 2009, for possessing with the intent to distribute cocaine base “crack”, a quantity of cocaine hydrochloride, and possessing with the intent to distribute a quantity of heroin.

    If convicted on Count 1, MARKELL LEBLANC, KIM M. JONES and KEVIN A. ALLEN face a minimum term of imprisonment of ten (10) years up to life, a fine of up to $4,000,000 and a minimum five (5) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. If convicted on Counts 2-6, 10-12, and 14-15, MARKELL LEBLANC and KIM M. JONES face up to twenty (20) years imprisonment, a fine of up to $1,000,000 and a minimum three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. If convicted on Counts 7-9, 13 and 16-19, MARKELL LEBLANC, KIM M. JONES and/or KEVIN A. ALLEN face a minimum term of imprisonment of five (5) years up to forty (40) years imprisonment, a fine of up to $2,000,000 and a minimum four (4) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Duane A. Evans.

  7. LAWRENCE W. DEAL, JR., age 28, a resident of New Orleans, Louisiana, was charged in a two-count indictment on January 22, 2009 for possessing with the intent to distribute cocaine base “crack”, and felon in possession of a firearm. If convicted on Count 1, DEAL faces a minimum term of imprisonment of five (5) up to forty (40) years imprisonment, a fine of up to $2,000,000 and a minimum four (4) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. If convicted on Count 2, DEAL faces a maximum term of imprisonment of five (5) years imprisonment, a fine of up to $250,000 and a maximum of three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Tony G. Sanders.

  8. GERALD ROBERTS, age 42, JOHN DELCO, age 35, and RONALD MITCHELL, age 30, all residents of New Orleans, Louisiana, were charged in a fifteen-count indictment on February 13, 2009 for distributing narcotics and illegally possessing firearms. If convicted, ROBERTS, who is charged in 6 of the 15 counts, faces a maximum term of life imprisonment, a fine of $4,000,000.00, five (5) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment and a $100 special assessment. If convicted, DELCO, who is charged in 10 of the 15 counts, faces a maximum term of twenty (20) years imprisonment, a fine of $1,000,000.00, three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment and a $100 special assessment. If convicted, MITCHELL, who is charged in 1 of the 15 counts, faces a maximum term of ten (10) years imprisonment, a fine of $250,000.00, three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment and a $100 special assessment. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Rick Veters.

  9. MORRIS SMITH, a/k/a “Ice”, age 24, and EVERETT HORTON, age 29, both residents of New Orleans, Louisiana, were charged in a four-count indictment on January 23, 2009 for distribution of crack cocaine and illegally possessing firearms. If convicted, SMITH faces a maximum term of twenty (20) years imprisonment, a fine of $1,000,000.00, three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment and a $100 special assessment. If convicted, HORTON faces a maximum term of twenty (20) years imprisonment, a fine of $1,000,000.00, three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment and a $100 special assessment. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Rick Veters.

  10. WILLIAM “BUDDY” RICHARDSON, age 32, a resident of New Orleans, Louisiana, was charged in a three-count indictment on January 22, 2009 possessing with the intent to distribute cocaine base “crack” and felon in possession of a firearm. If convicted on Count 1, RICHARDSON faces a maximum of twenty (20) years imprisonment, a fine of $1,000,000 and at least three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. If convicted on Count 2, RICHARSON faces a minimum term of imprisonment of five (5) up to forty (40) years imprisonment, a fine of up to $2,000,000 and a minimum four (4) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. If convicted on Count 3, RICHARDSON faces a maximum of ten (10) years imprisonment, a fine of $250,000 and up to three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Tony G. Sanders.

Speaking to today’s events, U. S. Attorney Jim Letten stated

Today’s roundup and multiple indictments of 15 individuals on federal firearms and narcotics charges is continuing and powerful evidence of our commitment in federal enforcement to aggressively identify, investigate, and charge — through all legal means possible — those individuals who, through violation of our federal criminal laws – pose a threat to public safety in the Greater New Orleans Area. Today’s events are also evidence of outstanding, seamless partnerships which exist between federal, state, and local law enforcement professionals. Our special thanks go out to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Drug Enforcement Administration, Louisiana State Police, New Orleans Police Department, the HIDTA group for their invaluable support, as well as to our own staff of U. S. Attorney’s Office professionals.

Special Agent in Charge Harper added:

ATF’s primary goal is to reduce the number of homicides and other violent crimes committed with firearms. This joint effort clearly illustrates the commitment of the Federal, State and local law enforcement agencies to a safer community.

U. S. Attorney Letten reiterated that the indictment is merely a charge and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

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