UNITE Investigation Includes Several States

By: Peter O'Connor Email
By: Peter O'Connor Email

It's a constant battle, but it's one that's expanding.

It's already something law enforcement officers fight on a daily basis.

New information shows how their efforts are spreading across the country.

UNITE officials say they have been working with the FBI and local law enforcement agencies to find out just how far people will go to bring drugs to the region.

For the past few months, UNITE officials say they've been busy rounding up those possessing illegal prescription pills and those who supply them.

They say the drug ring investigation spans from Detroit, Michigan to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and all the way down to Florida.

“The Dave Haddix case, which is around Breathitt County, he pled guilty to over a hundred thousand OxyContin ad's. The Joe Hall case in Knott, Letcher, Perry… Mr. Hall was recently arraigned,” Dan Smoot said.

59 year old John David Haddix pleaded guilty in January.

The FBI is working with UNITE Traffic Control Officer Randy Hunter.

He worked the Philadelphia case where he says more then 100 patient files were subpoenaed at urgent care services in Philadelphia.

“The conspiracy that we indicted on alleges 50 thousand methadone tablets and 150 OxyContin tablets. The street value on those tablets you are looking at several million dollars,” Hunter said.

Hunter says they have identified Timothy Wayne Hall from Floyd County as the ring leader.

Officials say he along with 19 others are charged with conspiracy to possess and distribute methadone and OxyContin tablets.

Since the state set up the Kentucky All Schedule Prescription Electronic Reporting or KASPER officials say the new system has made it harder for drug dealers to keep a supply and easier on law enforcement's ability to track prescriptions.

“There is a big market for them and it is the drug of choice for east Kentucky, but east Kentucky law enforcement is focused on this problem,” Smoot said.

UNITE Law Enforcement Officer Dan Smoot says the current drug ring investigation is still on-going and more charges are likely.

UNITE officials say those charged with conspiracy to possess methadone and OxyContin could face up to 20 years in jail no matter where they live.

UNITE officials say they've have stopped more then millions of dollars worth illegal drugs throughout the recent drug ring investigation.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by mel Location: lex on Jul 14, 2008 at 10:02 AM
    "Even pain management doctors who appear to be operating appropriately are contributing to this epidemic." Absolutely. Until these docs pull their heads out and start checking medical records, records of doctor shopping, and using different pharmacies, we are going to be overrun by a generation of kids who apparently can't get a tooth pulled without being prescribed morphine.
  • by Mary Anna Location: Martin on Jul 14, 2008 at 05:06 AM
    I do think that UNITE is doing a great job stopping the flow of drugs and tracking the individuals down. I am wondering how they may track down the individuals and doctors that provide these drugs when the individuals pay cash to the doctors. There are many doctors in KY, OH, and WV that only see individuals with cash. I do hope that when caught that something will be done with them.
  • by William A. Location: Millard on Jul 14, 2008 at 05:02 AM
    Unite is a Terrorest Org.Familys broken,properity taken,childern kidnaped by the state,homes raided in the middle of the nite,By storm troopers. Freedom is the answer.
  • by MAMAorg Location: Beaufort, SC on Jul 13, 2008 at 09:57 PM
    Drugs such as Methadone and OxyContin are not smuggled across our borders but are being distributed by our doctors. This is out of control and can be stopped but society holds doctors on a platform and seldom are they held accountable as others. Methadone is now the #1 killer of a prescription narcotic in this country. These deaths come from clinics, pain management and the diversion from both sources. Even pain management doctors who appear to be operating appropriately are contributing to this epidemic. Rx drugs have taken over our streets for addiction and deaths. Clinics are opening for so called treatment that are only supplying replacement drugs to ease the cravings of their former drug of choice. One pill for another is not the answer yet society accepts this.America is drugging their young and old and then wonder why we have this epidemic. This is a start to put these drug dealing docs out of business. Mothers Against Medical Abuse. Org Stop Rx, Methadone Deaths & Abuse

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