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Federal Government
Five Aliens Indicted On Illegal Entry Charges PDF Print E-mail
Federal Government
By Administrator   
Friday, 21 December 2018 10:27
A federal grand jury in Raleigh has returned indictments charging BRAYAN ALEXANDER FUNEZ-ESPINOZA, age 28, of Mexico, ROMERO FLORES-AGUILAR, age 30, of Mexico, JESUS GARCIA-HERNANDEZ, age 43, of Mexico, RODOLFO ROA-SAUCEDO, age 35, of Mexico, and JUAN ZARAGOZA-ZARAGOZA, age 36, of Mexico, with Illegal Reentry of a Deported Alien.
 
If convicted of illegal reentry of a deported alien, FUNEZ-ESPINOZA, previously deported twice and found in Wake County, FLORES-AGUILAR, previously deported twice and found in Johnston County, GARCIA-HERNANDEZ, previously deported three times and found in Franklin County, ROA-SAUCEDO, previously deported twice and found in Pitt County, and ZARAGOZA-ZARAGOZA, previously deported four times and found in Beaufort County, would face maximum penalties of two years’ imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, and a term of supervised release following any term of imprisonment.
 
The charges and allegations contained in the indictments are merely accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.
 
The cases are being investigated by ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations and Homeland Security Investigations.
Last Updated on Friday, 21 December 2018 10:28
 
Senator Tillis Praises Mattis After Secretary of Defense Resigns PDF Print E-mail
Federal Government
By Administrator   
Friday, 21 December 2018 10:07

 Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and Chairman of the Subcommittee on Personnel, issued the following statement:

“Jim Mattis is the definition of an American Patriot. From his enlistment in the Marine Corps to his service as Secretary of Defense, he has always served our nation with honor and integrity. He has helped transform the Pentagon over the last two years, prioritizing the personnel, training, readiness, and modernization of our Armed Forces. America is safer and more secure today than it was at the beginning of his tenure because of his tremendous leadership, and I am grateful for his service to our nation.”

 
U. S. House Passes Congressman Holding's Hurricane Relief Plan PDF Print E-mail
Federal Government
By Administrator   
Friday, 21 December 2018 10:00

The House of Representatives approved legislation (H.R. 88) that includes Congressman George Holding’s (NC-02) bill, the Hurricane Florence Tax Relief Act, providing meaningful tax relief to individuals and businesses impacted by Hurricane Florence.

“Hurricane Florence devastated North Carolina; inflicting billions of dollars in damages, causing catastrophic flooding and upending the lives of countless families,” said Congressman Holding.“These tax cuts will provide much needed relief for all the North Carolinians rebuilding their homes, businesses, and livelihoods in the wake of this historic natural disaster.”

The scope of Congressman Holding’s Hurricane Florence Tax Relief Act was expanded to include individuals and businesses affected by several recent natural disasters.

“I am grateful the scope of my bill was expanded to include Americans all over the country who were impacted by natural disasters last year,”said Congressman Holding.

BACKGROUND

TheHurricane Florence Tax Relief Act was introduced by Congressman Holding on September 20th, 2018. The legislation is co-sponsored by ten of the twelve additional North Carolina Representatives: Rep. Hudson (NC-8), Rep. Walker (NC-6), Rep. Price (NC-4), Rep. Pittenger (NC-9), Rep. Budd (NC-13), Rep. Foxx (NC-5), Rep. Rouzer (NC-7), Rep. Rice (SC-7), Rep. Meadows (NC-11), Rep. Butterfield (NC-1), and Rep. Jones (NC-3).

TheRetirement, Savings, and Other Tax Relief Act of 2018 and The Taxpayer First Act of 2018 (H.R. 88), which passed the House this afternoon, includes The Hurricane Florence Tax Relief Act. The scope of the legislation has been expanded to include American affected by the following natural disasters: Hurricanes Florence and Michael, Typhoons Mangkhut and Yutu, Tropical Storm Gita, California wildfires, Kilauea volcanic eruptions and earthquakes, and severe storms, tornadoes, winds, flooding, landslides, and mudslides in Alabama, Hawaii, Indiana, North Carolina, Wisconsin, and Texas.

 
New Bern Heroin And Marijuana Drug Trafficking Ring Members Sentenced To Federal Prison PDF Print E-mail
Federal Government
By Administrator   
Thursday, 20 December 2018 09:51
United States Attorney Robert J. Higdon, Jr. announced that
over the course of the last week in federal court, before Chief United States District
Judge Terrence W. Boyle, multiple defendants have been sentenced in a large-scale
heroin and marijuana trafficking organization.
The investigation was part of OCDETF Operation 190, which was
named in memory of New Bern Police Department Officer Alexander
Thalmann. Officer Thalmann was shot and killed in the line of duty in March
of 2014 by associates of the defendants in this case. An Organized Crime Drug
Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) is a joint federal, state, and local
cooperative approach to combat drug trafficking and is the nation’s primary
tool for disrupting and dismantling major drug trafficking organizations,
targeting national and regional level drug trafficking organizations, and
coordinating the necessary law enforcement entities and resources to disrupt
or dismantle the targeted criminal organization and seize their assets.
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The defendants’ convictions and sentencings were the culmination of a multiyear
investigation into a heroin trafficking ring operating in and around New Bern,
North Carolina, and led primarily by two men: DAMIEN LAMONTE BROWN and
CALVIN MARK WILSON. Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms,
and Explosives (ATF) and members of the New Bern Police Department learned that
BROWN, WILSON, and others had been involved in ordering heroin from New York
City and arranging it to be brought down in multi-kilogram amounts over a period of
several years. BROWN and WILSON then supplied various mid and lower-level
dealers in and around New Bern with the heroin for sale.
As part of the investigation, law enforcement conducted over twenty controlled
purchases of heroin from organization members between November 2016 and July
2017, along with traffic stops and other encounters in which they confirmed that
members possessed drugs and guns. Based on that investigation, ATF then obtained
authorization for a federal wiretap of cellular phones associated with WILSON and
two co-defendants. As a result, agents intercepted calls and texts over a three-month
period in late 2017 showing that WILSON was directing the supply and distribution
of kilogram-levels of heroin from New York to New Bern, NC. Based on intercepted
calls, agents were able to stop and arrest WILSON and two co-defendants traveling
back from New York with 3lbs of marijuana and 7 bars of heroin cutting agent.
ATF made arrests of many of the defendants on October 24, 2017, along with
searches of five residences associated with the organization. Through the life of the
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investigation, law enforcement has seized over a kilogram of heroin and twenty
firearms.
The defendants include:
 DAMIEN LAMONTE BROWN, aka “Dame,” 36, of New Bern, NC.
BROWN was convicted in August 2018 by a federal jury of conspiring to
distribute and possess with the intent to distribute one hundred (100)
grams or more of heroin, possession with intent to distribute one
hundred (100) grams or more of heroin, and possession of a firearm by
felon. BROWN was sentenced to 360 months’ imprisonment.
 DERRICK LAMONT DAVIS, aka “Gucci,” 35, of Kinston, NC. DAVIS
was convicted of conspiring to distribute and possess with the intent to
distribute one hundred (100) grams or more of heroin. DAVIS was
sentenced to 48 months’ imprisonment.
 DWAYNE LEE STALLINGS, aka “Smiley,” 35, of Cove City, NC.
STALLINGS was convicted of possession of a firearm by a felon and was
sentenced to 108 months’ imprisonment.
 NASSAR TURE MACK, 37, of New Bern, NC. MACK was convicted of
possession of a firearm by felon and was sentenced to 24 months’
imprisonment.
 MARIO CORRELLUS BARGNEARE, aka “Rio,” 39, of New Bern,
NC. BARGNEARE was convicted of conspiring to distribute and possess
with the intent to distribute one hundred (100) grams or more of heroin
and discharging a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.
BARGNEARE was sentenced to 204 months’ imprisonment.
 DEREK JACQUAN WIGGINS, aka “DJ,” 38, of New Bern, NC.
WIGGINS was convicted of conspiring to distribute and possess with the
intent to distribute a quantity of heroin, several counts of distributing
heroin, and possession of a firearm by a felon. He was sentenced to 120
months’ imprisonment.
 ROY JAMES NOLON, aka “Henny,” 21, of New Bern, NC. NOLON
was convicted of conspiring to distribute and possess with the intent to
distribute a quantity of heroin and possession of a firearm in
furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. He was sentenced to 96
months’ imprisonment.
 MICHAEL QUALEEK VELASQUEZ, aka “Moo Moo,” 23, of New
Bern, NC. VELASQUEZ was convicted of conspiring to distribute and
possess with the intent to distribute a quantity of heroin and possession
with intent to distribute a quantity of heroin. He was sentenced to 96
months’ imprisonment.
 LAMAR HOSEA WIGGINS, aka “LB,” 39, of New Bern, NC.
WIGGINS was convicted of conspiring to possess with the intent to
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distribute a quantity of heroin and possession of a firearm by a felon.
He was sentenced to 96 months’ imprisonment.
 LASHAWNNA JAQUETTE MCCOTTER, aka “Flossy,” 47, of New
Bern, NC. McCOTTER was convicted of conspiring to possess with the
intent to distribute a quantity of heroin and possession with intent to
distribute a quantity of marijuana. She was sentenced to 30 months’
imprisonment.
 LATREKA DENISE HARDESTY, aka “T,” 27, of New Bern, NC.
HARDESTY was convicted of conspiring to distribute and possess with
the intent to distribute a quantity of heroin. She was sentenced to time
served.
 ADRIENNE MICHELLE HALL, 35, of New Bern, NC. HALL was
convicted of conspiring to distribute and possess with the intent to
distribute a quantity of heroin. She was sentenced to time served.
 CAROLINE LOUISE HUGHES, 28, of Alliance, NC. HUGHES was
convicted of conspiring to distribute and possess with the intent to
distribute a quantity of heroin. She was sentenced to 5 years
probation.
Three defendants are scheduled to be sentenced over the course of the next few
months. They are:
 CALVIN MARK WILSON, aka “Bali,” 34, of New Bern, NC. WILSON
was convicted of conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to
distribute one thousand grams or more of heroin and a quantity of
marijuana and possession with intent to distribute a quantity of
marijuana. WILSON faces a sentence of not less than 20 years’
imprisonment.
 WILLIE FRANK JAMES AHERN, aka “White, White Bread, Dribs,”
39, of Bayboro, NC. AHERN was convicted of conspiring to distribute
and possess with the intent to distribute a quantity of heroin and several
instances of distributing quantities of heroin. AHERN faces up to life
imprisonment.
 WALTER NAJEE GREEN, III, 21, of New Bern, NC. GREEN was
convicted of distribution of a quantity of heroin and faces up to 30 years’
imprisonment.
The investigation also led to 8 individuals being charged by the state for drug
offenses. Those charges remain pending.
The investigation of this case was conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco,
Firearms & Explosives (ATF), New Bern Police Department, Jacksonville Police
5
Department, Craven County Sheriff’s Office, Pamlico County Sheriff’s Office, the
North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, Onslow County Sheriff’s Office,
Sampson County Sheriff’s Office, Trent Woods Police Department, Carteret County
Sheriff’s Office, Morehead City Police Department, Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office,
and with the assistance of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Drug
Enforcement Administration (DEA). Assistant United States Attorney Laura S.
Howard prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.
 
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