Walker County Sheriff’s Office and Huntsville Police Department Issue Joint Press Release regarding Piney Woods Operation/Southern District of Texas
The following is a press release issued by Walker County Sheriff Clint McRae:
Walker County Sheriff Clint McRae and Huntsville Police Chief Kevin Lunsford advise that their departments, along with the much appreciated combined efforts the Walker County District Attorney’s office, have now concluded a 2 1/2 year long narcotic and Organized Crime investigation within Walker County and the Southern District of Texas. All defendants in this investigation have now been sentenced, with the majority being prosecuted federally and the remainder being prosecuted on state charges.
This Investigation has resulted in the arrest of 29 high-profile suspects with the majority of which are Huntsville/Walker County residence. In addition to the arrest, we were also successful in the seizure of $1,800,000.00 in U.S Currency and the seizure of 30 kilograms of Cocaine, Methamphetamine and Marijuana with an estimated street value to be well within the million dollar range.
On Friday, October 2,2015 Jeramy Jerome Gage (DOB 10/13/80) was sentenced in United States District Court to 292 months for his participation in a narcotics distribution conspiracy. Gage was the final of 15 defendants to be sentenced federally. Gage’s sentencing oflicially concluded a lengthy, multi-agency investigation which had been named Operation Piney Woods.
Sentencing ofthe defendants ranged from 18 months in the Federal Bureau of Prisons to 292 months. All sentences included a period of time of community supervision to occur after the defendants’ release from prison. These same suspects are responsible for distributing large amounts of narcotics and illegal firearms throughout this region of the state, much of which has taking place in the Walker County area. This investigation also involved several confirmed associates of even larger narcotic trafficking organizations, who are also responsible for this type activity throughout other regions as well.
The conclusion of this investigation and the prosecution of all defendants involved, has and will continue to make a positive impact within our region of the state and Walker County from a enforcement standpoint, and a negative impact on the narcotic industry, which is certainly our goal and objective.
Myself, and Huntsville Police Chief Kevin Lunsford would also like to thank the following agencies and or entities for their much appreciated assistance in this long term investigation. Without their assistance and devoted man power this operation would not have been possible:
- Montgomery County Sheriffs Office
- Harris County Sheriff s Office
- DPS Criminal Investigative
- Houston Police Department
- Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF)
- Office of the Inspector General
- Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)
- Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI)
- United States Marshall’s Service
- Madison County District Attorney’s Office
- US. Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of Texas.
The Sheriff of Walker County and Huntsville Police Chief Kevin Lunsford jointly stated, “We are happy to have this lengthy investigation come to such a successful end. We thank those who worked the investigation as they sacrificed time with their families on evenings, days off and holidays to ensure those convicted would not sell drugs in Huntsville and Walker County for a long time. We continue to work with the cooperating agencies from this investigation to provide a safer environment for our community.”
We would also like to thank our community for their overwhelming support!