DEA: Federal & local authorities serve warrants around Evansville

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Published: Nov. 30, 2021 at 8:07 AM CST|Updated: Nov. 30, 2021 at 11:32 AM CST
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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - Officials with the DEA say the U.S. Marshal’s Federal Task Force, the FBI and local law enforcement agencies are cooperating in an operation.

They tell us they are serving federal search and arrest warrants.

“Some people were probably alarmed at the large number of police officers outside their homes,” said Vanderburgh County Sheriff Dave Wedding. “But we were dealing with dangerous narcotic dealers. They’ve had criminal histories that were fairly lengthy. Some of them have violent criminal histories. So we took the necessary precautions to ensure our safety as we conducted the warrants.”

Officials say they are conducting a large drug enforcement operation in the Evansville area.

According to the Vanderburgh County Sheriff, the investigation initially had 25-30 targets and they’ve been making a few arrests over the past few weeks.

Sheriff Wedding says 11 people were taken into custody on Tuesday. He said all of them are related to fentanyl and meth.

He tells us those people are being arraigned and are in the custody of the U.S. Marshals.

Wedding says this was a win for law enforcement.

“The war on drugs, I would equate to football,” said Wedding. “We were down 28-0. We just scored a touchdown.”

The sheriff says there will be a news conference at 10 a.m. Friday with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Tuesday afternoon, the indictment for 21 people was unsealed. You can read the full document here.

The document lists Julian Green of Indianapolis as the leader of an organization distributing drugs throughout the state.

The indictment states that Green would get meth from an unknown source and distribute it to Jeramey Smith and Hannah Kissel, who would then take it to the Evansville area to be sold by mid-level distributors.

Those distributors are who made up the other 17 people charged.

Kissel and Smith were charged in relation to another operation where eight people were indicted on fentanyl-related crimes.

The indictment states that the pair along with someone named L.C. Moore the second would provide a substance shown to have fentanyl in it to a Gregory Markey.

Markey would then create counterfeit pills that were shipped out and distributed throughout the state in a similar manner to the meth.

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