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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

Southern District of Georgia

For Immediate Release

March 15, 2011

Edward J. Tarver, United States Attorney

Contact: James D. Durham, First Assistant United States Attorney
(912) 201-2547

71 Defendants Charged with Gun and Drug Trafficking Offenses after Undercover Investigation

Undercover RCSO officers purchased and seized over 192 firearms during Operation Fox Hunt

AUGUSTA, GA – Forty–one federal indictments, today unsealed in federal court, have charged 51 defendants with federal firearm, drug trafficking or other federal offenses. Twenty additional defendants were charged by Richmond County authorities on related state firearm and drug charges. The federal and state charges follow an 18-month undercover investigation in the Augusta area dubbed Operation Fox Hunt.

The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office (RCSO), and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) initiated Operation Fox Hunt in August of 2009. Undercover RCSO deputies posed as members of the Augusta community interested in purchasing guns and drugs from the criminal element. During the operation, undercover officers purchased or recovered over 192 firearms, including handguns, rifles, assault rifles and sawed-off shotguns; and, approximately $75,000 worth of illegal drugs, including marijuana, cocaine and ecstasy pills. Many of the individuals who allegedly sold firearms and drugs to the undercover agents are convicted felons. In addition, a number of the guns purchased by undercover agents were reported stolen.

United States Attorney Edward J. Tarver stated, Operation Fox Hunt was a bold undertaking designed to protect public safety by removing violent criminals in who sell guns and drugs within our Augusta community. This undercover operation serves as notice to the criminal element that if you traffic in firearms or drugs in this district, law enforcement is watching and you will be prosecuted. Mr. Tarver praised the exemplary partnership between the ATF and the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.

Special Agent in Charge Gregory Gant of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ Atlanta Field Division stated, ATF stands at the front line against violent crime with its state, local and federal counterparts. This case is a great example of the law enforcement community coming together to remove dangerous criminals off the streets of Augusta. This enforcement action should serve as a clear indication that we will continually strive to investigate and prosecute those individuals who threaten the very fabric of our communities.

Following numerous arrests today, initial appearances for several of the federally indicted defendants will be held in United States District Court, Augusta, Georgia, on March 16, 2011. A listing of the 51 defendants recently indicted on federal charges is attached.

Mr. Tarver stressed that an indictment is only an accusation and is not evidence of guilt. All 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 Attorneys Nancy C. Greenwood and Lamont A. Belk are prosecuting the federal cases for the United States. For additional information, please contact First Assistant United States Attorney James D. Durham at (912) 201-2547.

Each of the defendants listed below is from Augusta, Georgia unless otherwise noted:

  • Derrick Lee Barbour, 21, Hephzibah, GA
  • Antonio Dondrell Bell, 20
  • Jamelle Anqwann Bragg, 21
  • Eric Braswell, 22
  • Allen Marquel Brooks, 24
  • Raesean Clark, 22, Hephzibah, GA
  • Lance Coleman, 38
  • Clifford Cooper, 19
  • Corey Mark Dansby, 24
  • Dominque Damont Dunn, 19
  • Carl Emery, 29
  • Lindell Antonio Givens, 22
  • Mervin Greene, 47
  • Deddrick Rodriquez Hall, 27
  • Kenneth LaBrian Hambrick, 28, Grovetown, GA
  • Wendell Laturis Harrell, 26
  • Ryan Rufus Harris, 29
  • Christopher Hawes, 21
  • Terrell Johnson, 20
  • Garrett Delmar Jones, 37
  • Kenneth Bernard Jones, 30
  • Rodriquez Deterio Jones, 25
  • Jerald Bernard Kea, 23
  • Lamichael Antwan Kelly, 26
  • Brandon Leverett, 20, Hephzibah, GA
  • Reginald Esquire Lewis, 21, Hephzibah, GA
  • William Henry Lloyd, 24
  • Terrance Jamal Luke, 21
  • Henry Fidell Mays, 40
  • Gerald Mims, 22, Hephzibah, GA
  • Ricardo Mobley, 24
  • Ruben Ortiz, 32
  • Tyrone Parrish, Jr., 19
  • Stevonn Cantrell Payne, 22
  • Timothy Lamont Phillips, 34
  • Corey Kareem Ravenell, 28
  • Elijawan Leyshath Rhodes, 18
  • Shawn Corey Russell, 29, Hephzibah, GA
  • Reginald Deon Stone, Jr., 18
  • Deon Tanskley, 19
  • Paul Douglas Taylor, 34
  • Christopher Lee Thomas, 21
  • Derek Darnell Thompson, 25
  • Wayne Bernard Turner, 40
  • >

  • Clifford Junior Walker, III, 40
  • Ahmad Kareem Wallace, 21
  • Bruce David Whitehead, Jr., 24, Altoona, PA
  • Jeffery Conrad Whitt, 22
  • Johnny Demario Wilcher, 20
  • Michael Antonio Wilson, 39
  • Demetrius Donnell Wright, 28, Hephzibah, GA