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Source: US State of Wisconsin

United States Attorney Matthew D. Krueger has announced federal charges related to a significant drug enforcement investigation undertaken by federal, state, and local agencies in Green Bay and surrounding communities, including a seizure of approximately 58 pounds of methamphetamine last month. On October 8, 2019, a federal grand jury returned a six-count indictment charging nine defendants with conspiracy to distribute heroin, methamphetamine, and marijuana. Additionally, the indictment charges some defendants with possession of firearms in furtherance of drug trafficking.

The defendants charged in the indictment are:

Name

Age

Charge

Derek A. Liebergen

26

Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances; Possession with intent to Distribute Cocaine; Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Crime

Malachi J. Root

29

Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances; Possession with intent to Distribute Cocaine; Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Crime

Wayne L. Stilen

39

Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances; Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Crime

Sally A. Miller

35

Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances

Jeremy M. Ludwig

32

Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances

Kayla R. Kennedy

39

Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances

Jasmine L. Gillette

24

Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances

Christopher S. Ullmer

22

Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances

Peter F. Thao

23

Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances

According to a criminal complaint filed in the case on September 17, 2019, and detention hearing held October 9, 2019, law enforcement executed multiple search warrants in September 2019, including one at a hotel in Outagamie County resulting in the seizure of approximately 58 pounds of methamphetamine, one kilogram of a white powder later determined to be tramadol, 57 grams of cocaine, 32 marijuana vaping cartridges, marijuana edibles, $39,215 in U.S. currency. Derek Liebergen rented the hotel room and was arrested in the vicinity of the room. When arrested, Liebergen possessed a handgun in the waistband of his pants. Law enforcement indicates that the street value of 58 pounds of methamphetamine is $500,000-$750,000 after it is divided for further delivery.    

Furthermore on September 9, 2019, Brown County Drug Task Force investigators arrested Malachi Root in Green Bay. On the driver’s seat of Root’s car, law enforcement seized a loaded Ruger 9 mm handgun. A variety of drugs were located in several bags and suitcases including 930 grams hash oil, 463 grams marijuana, 68 grams MDMA, 23 grams of methamphetamine, 8 grams of cocaine, a money counter, marijuana edibles (cookies and gummies) and approximately $25,728.               

United States Attorney Krueger stated: “Meth is highly addictive and destroys lives. That is why law enforcement partners at all levels—federal, state, and local—are working together to bring federal charges against drug traffickers to the fullest extent of the law.  The enormous quantity of meth seized in connection with this case underscores both the real danger posed by meth and our resolve to combat it. I commend the extraordinary investigative efforts that made these charges possible.”     

The national methamphetamine problem is a growing concern here in the state of Wisconsin, as evidenced by this large seizure of methamphetamine and the indictments of six individuals.  The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) works daily with our local, state and federal law enforcement partners in an attempt to stem the flow of methamphetamine into Wisconsin, as well as, hold drug dealers accountable for their disregard for human life and public safety,”  said Paul E. Maxwell, Jr., Assistant Special Agent in Charge, DEA’s Milwaukee District Office.

If convicted of the conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, the defendants face a minimum term of ten years, up to life in prison. Convictions on the firearms counts would expose the defendants to additional terms of incarceration.  

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. Defendants are presumed innocent and are entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

The investigation was led by the following law enforcement groups:  Brown County Drug Task Force, Lake Winnebago Area Metropolitan Drug Unit, Green Bay Police Department, Brown County Sheriff’s Office, Brown County District Attorney’s Office, Outagamie County District Attorney’s Office, Wisconsin Department of Justice-Division of Criminal Investigation, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, Oconto County Sheriff Department, and Oconto Falls Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney William Roach.   

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