Thursday, March 2, 2017

Drug Trafficking Charges Filed Against Alleged Members Of Violent Groups In Philadelphia Public Housing Facility

The U.S. Attorney’s Office District of Eastern Pennsylvania released the below information:

PHILADELPHIA – Two indictments[1] were unsealed today charging 24 people in violent drug trafficking groups that had operated out of the Norman Blumberg Apartment Complex, a public housing facility in Philadelphia, announced Acting United States Attorney Louis D. Lappen. The first indictment (Criminal No. 17-71) charges Edward Stinson, 27, Emmett Perkins, 29, Rondell Holloway, 27, Jamillah Bellamy, 35, Debra Baylor, 28, Jerry Lawrence, 27, Germel Perkins, 24, Carl Stinson, 21, Imere Stinson, 22, Daquian Brown, 22, Reginald Copper, 55, Terrance Jackson, 47, and Stephen Dawkins, Sr., 52, all of Philadelphia, with conspiracy to distribute 280 grams or more of crack cocaine, distribution of crack cocaine within 1,000 feet of public housing (a drug-free zone), and related crimes in 86 separate counts. The second indictment (Criminal No. 17-72) charges Juan Jarmon, 30, Damon Edwards, 31, Donta Edwards, 28, Raheen Butler, 33, Michael Ferrell, 25, Dottie Good, 30, Taft Harris, Jr., 27, Steven Thompson, 34, Derek Fernandes, 58, Anthony Staggers, 34, and Gene Wilson, Jr., 40, all of Philadelphia, as well as Edward Stinson and Dawkins, with conspiracy to distribute 280 grams or more of crack cocaine, distribution of crack cocaine within 1,000 feet of public housing (a drug-free zone), and related crimes in 48 separate counts.

It is alleged that members of these drug trafficking groups sold crack cocaine 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in and around the public housing facility, employing a large network of supervisors, shift sellers, and lookouts, including juveniles. Members of these groups allegedly supplied millions of dollars of crack cocaine in the alleys, hallways, and residences of this public housing facility and to the streets of this neighborhood. It is further alleged that members of these groups used and carried firearms, robbed rival drug dealers, and used intimidation, threats, and violence to further the interests of the groups. For example, the second indictment (Criminal No. 17-72) alleges that when one female resident told others that the group sold drugs, Jarmon threatened her and then physically assaulted her, allowing the group to continue selling crack cocaine.

“These indictments charge the defendants with running large-scale, violent drug trafficking groups in a public housing facility that provided housing to low-income residents and families,” said Lappen. “Individuals who engage in drug trafficking, particularly those who prey on the financial weakness and vulnerability of persons, such as drug users and addicts, juveniles, and those living in poverty, should know that they will be prosecuted and held accountable for their crimes. We will continue to commit the federal resources necessary to combat these drug trafficking groups and give the many good residents in these areas an opportunity to reclaim their neighborhoods.”

“For years, this organization has maintained a stranglehold on the Blumberg Apartments complex and surrounding neighborhoods,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Michael Harpster. “They’ve used intimidation and violence to maintain control of that area. The FBI and our law enforcement partners are determined to bring drug traffickers to justice, for the crimes committed and incalculable damage done to our communities.”

“These defendants terrorized the residents of the Norman Blumberg Apartment complex with their drug trafficking activities alleged in these indictments as well as the violence associated with their illegal trade,” said Gary Tuggle, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) Philadelphia Field Division. “The DEA, working with its law enforcement partners such as the FBI, PPD, Philadelphia Housing Authority Police Department, and the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office will remain vigilant in pursuing cases against drug trafficking organizations that seek to hold residents of public housing communities hostage with their criminal activities.”

According to the indictments, Edward Stinson was a leader of both drug trafficking groups and conducted drug trafficking activities from both inside and outside of prison. As charged in the first indictment (Criminal No. 17-71), Edward Stinson and Emmett Perkins controlled drug sales in various areas of the public housing facility from 2010 to 2015. As charged in the second indictment (Criminal No. 17-72), Jarmon, Damon Edwards, and Edward Stinson controlled drug sales in various areas of the public housing facility from 2012 to 2014. These leaders allegedly obtained bulk crack and cocaine, cooked and packaged crack cocaine into bundles, hired, fired, and supervised shift sellers and lookouts, levied taxes on members and customers, and provided protection from other drug trafficking groups. It is alleged that the shift sellers were the daily workers employed by the leaders to sell crack cocaine in the locations controlled by the groups, while the lookouts assisted other members of the groups by alerting them to the presence of law enforcement and directing customers to the shift sellers.

If convicted of all charges, each defendant faces a maximum possible sentence of life in prison and a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison.

This case was investigated by the United States Attorney’s Office, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Drug Enforcement Administration in collaboration with the Philadelphia Police Department, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office and the Philadelphia Housing Authority Police. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Jerome Maiatico and Katayoun Copeland.

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