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South Georgia meth traffickers among 10 convicted in federal court

2 connected to Mexican drug cartel to spend 10 plus years in federal prison

File photo of methamphetamines seized by authorities (Hannelore Foerster/Getty Images)

WAYCROSS, Ga. – Two drug traffickers, a Douglas, Georgia, man and an illegal alien with ties to a Mexican drug cartel, will spend more than a decade in federal prison after sentencing in a South Georgia methamphetamine conspiracy. 

Ricardo Santana-Hernandez, 32, of C’daltimairano, Guerroro, Mexico, was sentenced to 135 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Lisa Godbey Wood. Santana-Herndandez, Bland and nine other conspirators -- five of them South Georgia residents -- pleaded guilty after their indictment by a federal grand jury in October 2018 for drug trafficking and firearms-related offenses. 

Ryon Bland, 32, of Douglas, Georgia, was sentenced to 110 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Lisa Godbey Wood. He and Santana-Hernandez were sentenced for conspiring to possess with intent to distribute large quantities of crystal methamphetamine. After their sentences, Santana-Hernadez will be deported, and Bland will be placed on court-supervised release for three years.

According to court filings and testimony, in early 2018, the Telfair County Sheriff’s Office received information that Donna Bazemore, aka “Dirty D,” 45, of McRae, Georgia, was distributing large quantities of methamphetamine from her residence in Telfair County. Investigators said they searched the residence and seized 16 bags of methamphetamine, a bag of cocaine, two bags of MDMA (also known as Ecstasy), at least six firearms, a video security system and other drug trafficking tools.

Agents arrested Bland, who was at the location breaking down methamphetamine into smaller bags for distribution. Prosecutors said that Santana-Hernandez was a source of supply for the drug trafficking organization that operated in Telfair County and elsewhere.

Santana-Hernandez, who resided in the Atlanta area illegally, received kilograms of methamphetamine from the “La Familia” cartel in Mexico. In August 2018, Santana-Hernandez delivered two kilograms of methamphetamine into Georgia via a courier. Federal agents arrested Santana-Hernadez when he came to a Dublin, Georgia, restaurant to collect payment.

In addition to Santana-Hernandez, Bland and Bazemore, the following people also have been convicted for their roles in the conspiracy:

Enio Camacho-Pineda, “Tony Montana,” 31, of Atlanta
Enrique Lopez, aka “Ricky,” 44, of Douglas
Eugene Wright, aka “Burt,” 52, of Millwood
Cristian Jesus Martinez, 19, of Mexico
Angela Hurst, 38, of Douglas
Kristel Merritt, 43, of Douglas
Angie McCoy, aka “Angie Woods,” 24, Douglas
Kenneth Woodrow Mancil, 53, Sylvania

“These sentences demonstrate that our partnerships with federal, state, and local law enforcement are the key to targeting and dismantling organized crime,” U.S. Attorney Bobby L. Christine said. “With hard time for their crimes, two drug traffickers will pay the penalty for spreading poison in our communities.”

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Telfair County Sheriff’s Office, Jeff Davis County Sheriff’s Office, the Douglas-Coffee Drug Unit assisted DOJ's Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Marshals Service in this case.


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