Two Alleged Marijuana Dealers On Trial In Federal Court

February 2, 2007
by: 
Dwayne Page

Two alleged marijuana dealers in Warren and Cannon County are on trial in Federal Court in Chattanooga.

48 year old Jeffory Carl Young of Short Mountain Road, Woodbury and 53 year old Morris Edward Roller of Lance Road, McMinnville were each indicted in May by a federal grand jury on one count of conspiracy to distribute over 2,200 pounds of marijuana and a multi-count indictment for distribution of marijuana.

The men, business partners, operated farmland on the Warren-Cannon County line.

The case stems from a two and a half year old undercover investigation by the Warren County Sheriff's Department, the Southeastern Drug Enforcement Agency, the Middle Tennessee Drug Enforcement Agency, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, the Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) Agency, and the Tennessee Department of Revenue.

Officers say they made many undercover buys leading up to the raids in May.

DeKalb County Sheriff Patrick Ray worked for the Warren County Sheriff's Department at the time and was involved in the investigation.

A state witness testified this week that Young and Roller trafficked over 100 pounds of marijuana every two weeks for several years.

During the arrest in May, authorities seized 31 parcels of land, equaling 1900 acres with a tax appraisal of $2.5 million; more than $10,000 in cash; and over ten pounds of marijuana.

Investigators also confiscated two farm tractors, a round hay baler, semi-truck, a ton truck, and a bob cat loader, all believed to have been purchased with proceeds from the sale of drugs.

The Tennessee Department of Revenue has also levied a $60,000 tax against the two men

The trial is set to resume Tuesday. If convicted, Young could be in prison for the rest of his life and Roller could get a 25 to 30 year federal prison sentence

Sheriff Ray says more arrests may be forthcoming as a result of this investigation, including some from DeKalb County.

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