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Nevada County Picayune-Times - Prescott, AR
  • Probe results in conspiracy indictment

  • Three men, including the owner of a Clark County cattle and trucking company, have been indicted on federal drug conspiracy charges in what federal officials called a wide-ranging investigation.
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  • Three men, including the owner of a Clark County cattle and trucking company, have been indicted on federal drug conspiracy charges in what federal officials called a wide-ranging investigation.
    Jason Willmon, 42, of Okolona, owner and operator of Willmon Cattle Co., a cattle and trucking business in Clark County, was arraigned before U. S. Magistrate Barry Bryant on Monday in Hot Springs in connection with drug conspiracy charges.
    Willmon, Brian Gannon, of New Jersey, and Thomas Hall, of Clark County, were all indicted by a federal grand jury in Hot Springs on May 7 in connection with their conspiring to distribute an undisclosed amount of a methamphetamine mixture. Count one of the indictment names all three men in connection with their conspiring together during the period from Oct. 1, 2013, to April 4, 2014.
    Count two of the indictment names Gannon in connection with his possession of more than five grams of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute and dispense; and, count three of the indictment names Willmon and Hall as aiding and abetting each other in the possession of more than 50 grams of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute and dispense.
    The indictments against Hall and Gannon were in conjunction with complaints filed against them in federal district court in Hot Springs alleging that Gannon was detained from a traffic stop on Interstate 30 on April 3, and arrested after a small amount of a substance believed to be methamphetamine was discovered in a search of his car.
    In a subsequent interview with investigators, Gannon identified Hall as the regular source of drugs which he traveled from New Jersey to Arkansas to obtain. Gannon also described a concrete building in Clark County where he met Hall to obtain the drugs and stayed with Hall from March 29 through April 3.
    Gannon stated that he observed Hall distribute methamphetamine to another individual at this building and that he knew that there was additional methamphetamine concealed in a PVC pipe located in a bar adjacent to the concrete building,” the April 11 complaint affidavit sworn by DEA Agent Lee Freeman states.
    Lawmen raided the property on April 4 and arrested Hall.
    Hall admitted to distributing methamphetamine a couple times a week from the property for approximately the lat six months,” the affidavit states. “He stated that he distributed methamphetamine to one person at a time.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Hall told federal agents he typically charged about $1,400 an ounce for the drugs.
    During the search of the property, a PVC pipe containing several empty baggies and one large baggie with about 4.7 ounces of a substance that tested positive for the presence of methamphetamine in it were recovered from the location previously described by Gannon. Lawmen also recovered a variety of drug paraphernalia and firearms.
    Willmon was the first to appear in court Monday in connection with the investigation and indictment, according to U. S. Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas Conner Eldridge, in a statement on Willmon's arraignment.
    Eldridge said the DEA, Clark County Sheriff's Office, Group 6 Drug Task Force and the Arkansas State Police launched an investigation into drug trafficking in pound quantities of methamphetamine in Southwest Arkansas.
    Willmon appeared in court with Arkadelphia attorney Greg Vardamen and pleaded not guilty to all counts in the indictment. He was released upon special conditions and a $5,000 unsecured bond by Bryant.
    Willmon is to remain under house arrest and supervision by the U.S. Probation Office pending trial, and is not allowed to travel outside of the U.S. Western District of Arkansas without judicial permission.
    No trial date has been set for Willmon.

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