19 sentenced for their roles in drug trafficking organization

Published: Sep. 7, 2022 at 1:19 PM EDT
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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -After a lengthy investigation, 19 individuals were sentenced to prison for their roles in a drug trafficking organization (DTO) operating in Huntington that distributed large amounts of fentanyl, methamphetamine, cocaine, and other illegal substances in the Huntington area.

Brayan Luces, 25, of Columbus, Ohio, was sentenced today to 10 years in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release, for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, 400 grams or more of fentanyl, and five kilograms or more of cocaine.

Kimberly Ann Combs, 45, of Huntington, was sentenced to six months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, for possession with intent to distribute a quantity of oxycodone.

According to court documents and statements made in court, from May to July 2021, Luces regularly shipped a minimum of 1 kilogram of fentanyl and 1 kilogram of cocaine to Huntington. The fentanyl and cocaine were transported by vehicle and provided to an individual on consignment. After the drugs were sold in the Huntington area, Luces would receive the drug proceeds, which were transported by vehicle to Columbus.

On July 22, 2021, law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Luces’ residence in Columbus and seized 13 kilograms of fentanyl, 2 kilograms of methamphetamine, approximately $26,484 in cash, two firearms, and various magazines and ammunition.

Combs admitted that she bought more than 100 30-milligram oxycodone pills from co-defendant William Raeshaun Byrd at his Huntington residence on July 23, 2021. When Combs left Byrd’s residence, law enforcement officers stopped her vehicle and recovered the oxycodone pills. Combs further admitted that she received oxycodone pills from Byrd on at least 10 other occasions in June and July 2021, and provided some of those pills to another individual.

This successful prosecution disrupted a conspiracy that distributed a variety of drugs including fentanyl, methamphetamine, cocaine, cocaine base (also known as “crack”), oxycodone, and heroin. Law enforcement officers seized more than 47 pounds of fentanyl, 6.5 pounds of methamphetamine, 4.5 pounds of cocaine, and 2 pounds of heroin as well as 14 firearms and more than $335,000 in cash.

The other defendants were sentenced to the following prison terms after pleading guilty to various felony offenses:

  • William Raeshaun Byrd, 32, of Huntington
  • Marvin Jerome Calvin, 41, of Huntington
  • Mark Anthony Chandler, 31, of Huntington
  • Donald Duane Cole, 52, of Huntington
  • Robert Lamont Congleton, 42, of Huntington
  • Reginald Jerome Hairston, 45, of Huntington
  • Marcus Allen Johnson, 37, of Huntington
  • Erica Antoinette Kirker, 35, of Huntington
  • Aaron Scott Midkiff, 27, of Huntington
  • Edward Shane Midkiff, 35, of Huntington
  • Scott Lee Midkiff, 36, of Huntington
  • William Edward Nellons Jr., 38, of Huntington
  • Leonard Brandon Joe Rice, 36, of Louisa
  • Dennis Wayne Snyder, 32, of Hurricane
  • Ricky Lee Taylor, 58, of Charleston
  • Christopher Leon Vest, 34, of Huntington
  • Dillon Andrew Young, 29, of Sissonville

The case was investigated by the FBI and the Southern West Virginia TOC-West Task Force. The Southern West Virginia TOC-West Task Force consists of officers from the Cabell County Sheriff’s Department, the Hurricane Police Department, and the Marshall University Police Department, with support from the West Virginia State Police, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and the Violent Crime and Drug Task Force West. The Ohio Highway Patrol, the Kentucky State Police, and the FBI and DEA in Columbus, Ohio also assisted in the investigation.

This prosecution was part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten the United States by using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.