CLEVELAND — Nine people, including two Lorain residents, were indicted in federal court Thursday for their roles in bringing large amounts of fentanyl and carfentanil from China with the intent of selling the drugs in Akron and Lorain.
According to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s office in Cleveland, Ajarae Hisle, 27, of Lorain, and Jamar Jackson, 28, of Lorain, as well as seven others from Northeast Ohio, were indicted on charges of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute more than 400 grams of fentanyl and at least 9.65 grams of carfentanil between May 2016 and February 2018.
The news release also said some of the other members of the conspiracy were involved in the illegal use or possession of firearms, body armor and ammunition in addition to laundering their drug profits through the creation of fake companies and the purchase of automobiles, jewelry, handbags, furs, shoes and other items.
Akron couple Donte Gibson, 39, and Audrey Gibson, 34, had the drugs shipped from China to several post office boxes in the Akron-Canton area. Lisa Richardson, 54, also of Akron, and others would pick up the drugs from the post office locations and bring them back to the Gibsons’ home where they would cut the drugs into saleable product.
The drugs were then given to Jackson, Donte Gibson’s daughter, Dontaysha, 21, of Akron, and Derrick Adams II, 22, of Akron, for distribution in Lorain and Akron.
One of the companies used to launder the money, founded by Audrey Gibson, was Pound Cake Entertainment LLC, which used the website IAmPoundCake.com, which said it sold clothing and “one of a kind items” as well as offering access to a members-only Snapchat account featuring Audrey Gibson being “flirty or nasty depending on the day.”
“These defendants brought huge quantities of deadly fentanyl and carfentanil into Akron, threatening the lives of so many of our neighbors, friends and family,” U.S. Attorney Justin Hardman said. “They used firearms and body armor to protect their drug trafficking and set up fake companies to launder their dirty drug money.”
FBI Special Agent Ryan Korner said the indictment was an important victory for the residents of Northeast Ohio.
“The harm inflicted by opioids is matched only by the profit potential for those who sell them,” he said. “These defendants not only fueled the opioid drug problem in Northern Ohio, but they supported the addiction in several parts of the country.”