Jury Convicts Kansas City Man of PCP Conspiracy
KANSAS CITY, MO—Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Kansas City, Mo., man was convicted in federal court today of his role in a conspiracy to distribute PCP as well as a money-laundering conspiracy.
Antonio Laregus Robertson, 37, of Kansas City, was found guilty of the charges contained in a March 27, 2013, federal indictment.
Evidence presented during the trial indicated that Robertson participated in a conspiracy to distribute at least kilogram of PCP from Jan. 1, 2007, to March 13, 2013, as well as a conspiracy to conduct financial transactions that involved the proceeds of illegal drug trafficking. Cash and other items obtained from drug sales were used to purchase additional drugs for sale, which promoted the drug-trafficking conspiracy.
Robertson was among 20 defendants charged in the indictment, of whom 19 pleaded guilty and four have been sentenced.
According to the indictment, at least 10 law enforcement-controlled purchases of PCP, cocaine and crack cocaine were conducted with at least five of the defendants. At least 10 arrests or searches of co-conspirators occurred where PCP, cocaine or crack was recovered, the indictment says, and on multiple occasions during the conspiracy, defendants were found in possession of hundreds or thousands of dollars in cash, with no known legitimate income.
Robertson purchased PCP from co-defendant Walter Deandre Sorrells, also known as “Juice,” “Waterboy,” and “Walt,” 39, of Blue Springs, Mo. Sorrells pleaded guilty on Aug. 13, 2015, to his role in the drug-trafficking and money-laundering conspiracies. Sorrells admitted that he purchased large quantities of PCP from a source in California and re-sold it in smaller quantities in the Kansas City metropolitan area. Thirteen controlled drug purchases, totaling well in excess of one kilogram of PCP, were made directly with Sorrells. Additionally, at least two shipments of PCP (and other controlled substances) were taken by law enforcement before they were delivered to Sorrells and containers of another shipment were recovered from Sorrells. These shipments, in total, exceed one kilogram of PCP. Under the terms of his plea agreement, Sorrells will be sentenced to 20 years in federal prison without parole.
Following the presentation of evidence, the jury in the U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Mo., deliberated for about seven hours before returning the guilty verdicts to U.S. Chief District Judge Greg Kays, ending a trial that began Monday, Aug. 17, 2015.
Under federal statutes, Robertson is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of 40 years in federal prison without parole. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.
All of the co-defendants are severally and jointly liable to forfeit to the government $814,000, which was received in exchange for the unlawful distribution of PCP, cocaine or crack cocaine. According to the indictment, that is based upon a conservative street price of $200 per ounce of PCP (3,099 ounces distributed), $1,000 per ounce of cocaine (129 ounces distributed) and $1,100 per ounce of crack cocaine (60 ounces distributed).
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Bruce Rhoades and Patrick C. Edwards. It was investigated by the Kansas City, Mo., Police Department, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the FBI and IRS-Criminal Investigation.