UPDATE 6/5/13 @ 9:35 p.m.
SCIOTO COUNTY, Ohio (WSAZ) -- A man who was considered the ringleader of a drug trafficking conspiracy from Dayton to Portsmouth has been arrested.
Shawn Shank, 37, of Dayton, who investigators call the ringleader, had been on the run since last month when 18 people were indicted on federal charges of transporting and selling heroin.
Shank was arrested Tuesday night by the FBI and the Safe Streets Task Force.
He was previously indicted by a federal grand jury for his alleged involvement in a heroin distribution conspiracy.
Shank was expected to appear Wednesday in federal court in Cincinnati.
The indictment was unsealed Thursday at a news conference in Scioto County. All 18 are accused of being involved in a two-year conspiracy to deliver heroin from Dayton to Portsmouth where they distributed it out of seven Portsmouth locations including two motels.
All 18 are charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than one kilogram of heroin. If they are found guilty, they face at least 10 years, and up to life, in prison.
Scioto County Sheriff Marty Donini explained this is going to slow down some of the people looking for drugs in this county.
"This is going to have a dent in heroin, the supply,' Sheriff Donini said. "because this is a pretty significant investigation."
Portsmouth Police Chief Robert Ware explained that these investigations take time and patience from the public.
"If there are two messages I could get out is one, we need your help," Ware explained. "It is not always as overt as they want it to be, it is covert and for the last five to six months we have made an impact at what it was they wanted us to solve."
The following people are charged in the indictment that was unsealed Thursday:
PORTSMOUTH RESIDENTS CHARGED
DAYTON AREA RESIDENTS CHARGED
The 29-count indictment charges members of the conspiracy with other crimes including possession with intent to distribute heroin, distribution of heroin and maintaining a place for the purpose of distributing heroin. Each of those crimes is punishable by a sentence ranging from probation to 20 years in prison.
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