Massive drug ring bust grows with additional suspects indicted
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A drug trafficking crime ring grows even bigger with 20 people now indicted in the case that stretches across two states.
In addition to 14 suspects indicted in December six more people have been indicted, and not all of them showed up in court Monday.
The investigation into the drug ring that operated in Louisville and New Albany started in the summer of 2014. LMPD's FLEX unit and ATF agents cracked the crime ring that indicted 14 suspects in December.
During raids, investigators collected heroin, meth, cocaine, marijuana, four bullet-proof vests, 14 guns, over $600,000 and three vehicles.
Monday, six more people were ordered to appear before a judge. Patrick Veatch, David Stice, Jason Wright, and Stacie Chapman showed up for arraignment. The judge set bench warrants for Patricia Redfern and Karl Barta who failed to appear.
Police say many of the suspects are related to each other, and most are from Louisville's Portland neighborhood. Officials say it wasn't your typical street corner operation, and it's a significant bust in Louisville's drug problem.
"That's why this indictment is significant. We're not just going off the guy who received the drugs from a supplier and sells them out, we're going after everybody who played a part in the operation," said Andrew Beckman, assistant commonwealth attorney.
There are hundreds of charges among the group - including criminal syndication, drug trafficking, fleeing and evading and tampering with evidence. The logistics of having 20 people in court will be tricky -- and the prosecutor says it'll take several hearings to sort everything out. Beckman adds that some suspects may take plea deals, but they do not expect any more arrests.
Beckman says each defendant faces 10-20 years in prison.
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