Federal prosecutors will announce charges today against six people involved in a multistate cocaine ring, including one man who was arrested in Greenwood in February.
The cocaine investigation has been ongoing for several months, according to a news release. Search warrants, seizures of cocaine and cash and arrests have been made in the Fort Wayne area, Greenwood, Ohio and Texas. The indictments will be announced at a news conference by the U.S. Attorney’s Office at 1 p.m. today in Fort Wayne.
One of the people being charged will be Dewayne Lewis, 40, Greenwood, who was arrested Feb. 3 after police raided his motel room at Red Roof Inn on Sheek Road. Lewis told police after he was arrested that he worked for a drug trafficking group in Fort Wayne, according to court documents.
Names of the other five suspects were not available Monday afternoon.
During the raid in Greenwood, police seized 19 kilograms of cocaine and more than $2 million in cash from Lewis’ room. Before Lewis was charged with any crimes in Johnson County, federal prosecutors took the case in order to charge him with federal drug crimes. He was taken to court on a complaint for distributing more than 5 kilograms of cocaine.
An indictment against Lewis was filed Feb. 25 in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, but the court documents are not yet available for public access. Prosecutors will release the indictment information after today’s news conference, U.S. Attorney’s Office spokesman Ryan Holmes said.
A separate document filed with the court said Lewis is charged with a single count of manufacturing, distributing or dispensing a controlled substance. If convicted, the penalties for that charge range from 10 years to life in federal prison and a fine of up to $10 million, according to the document.
On Feb. 1, Lewis stopped at a residence in Butler, located in DeKalb County about 35 miles north of Fort Wayne. Lewis told police he went into a pole barn at the location and retrieved 19 kilograms of cocaine and a large amount of cash, according to court documents. Lewis then drove to Greenwood with the drugs and money and went to a room at the Red Roof Inn, which was rented with the name Michael Jackson and an address from Evansville.
Police were monitoring the hotel Feb. 3 and saw a woman carry a large black gym bag into Lewis’ room at the motel. Police knocked on the motel room door, but no one answered. A K-9 officer was brought in and notified police to the smell of narcotics coming from Lewis’ room.
Officers received a search warrant and raided the room. Lewis was inside with 19 bricks of drugs, each sized to weigh 1 kilogram, and approximately $2 million in cash. Police tested one of the packages of drugs and it tested positive for cocaine, according to court documents.