By Wendy Holdren
A Wyoming County couple and a Nicholas County man all pleaded guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court to conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and money laundering charges.
Christopher Brooks, 36, and co-defendant and his wife, Jennifer Brooks, 29, both of Glen Fork, admitted that from at least March 2010 until April 27, 2012, they received quantities of oxycodone by U.S. Postal Service Express Mail from a known individual located in Tampa, Fla.
Brooks and his wife admitted that they received at least 130 express mail packages containing approximately 17,000 30-milligram oxycodone tables. They admitted that they deposited at least $300,000 cash into bank accounts that were owned and controlled by known individuals in exchange for the pills.
Both Christopher and Jennifer Brooks each face up to 40 years in prison and a $1.5 million fine. They will be sentenced June 19, by U.S. District Judge Irene Berger.
“When tens of thousands of painkillers are illegally mailed in just over a year’s time, it says something about the extent of this district’s pill problem,” U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin said. “My office will continue to spare no effort to pursue pill dealers who fuel this epidemic.”
Another individual, Keith Keiffer, 32, of Calvin, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
He admitted that from at least Aug. 31, 2011, until about April 27, 2012, he received at least 15 express mail packages containing approximately 1,400 30-milligram oxycodone tablets from a known individual located in Tampa, Fla.
He further admitted between Nov. 10, 2011, and April 5, 2012, he deposited at least $30,000 in cash payments in exchange for the pills.
He was also hand-delivered approximately 4,150 oxycodone pills from a known individual who made at least five trips to West Virginia from Florida between June 2011 and February 2012.
Keiffer faces up to 40 years in prison and a $1.5 million fine; he is scheduled to be sentenced June 25 by Judge Berger.
The West Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigations, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), the IRS Criminal Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Wyoming County Sheriff’s Department conducted the investigations.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Haley Bunn is in charge of the prosecutions.