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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Four Individuals Indicted on Methamphetamine Charges to Appear in Federal Court



ELKINS, WV—Four individuals named in an indictment returned on August 21, 2012 by a federal grand jury sitting in Elkins, West Virginia, will appear before Magistrate Judge John S. Kaull on October 3, 2012, in Clarksburg, West Virginia.

United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II, announced that:

ROBERT ALLEN COOK, age 48, of Old Fields, West Virginia; PAULA LYNN CHAMP, age 29, of Purgitsville, West Virginia; LISHA ROSETTA RUNIONS, age 51, of Fisher, West Virginia; and LISA ANN CRITES, age 36, of Moorefield, West Virginia, were named in a 32-count indictment.

Count one alleges that COOK, CHAMP, RUNIONS, and CRITES conspired to manufacture methamphetamine from July 2011 to January 29, 2011 in the Northern District of West Virginia.

Count two alleges that COOK, CHAMP, RUNIONS, and CRITES manufactured methamphetamine on January 29, 2012, in Hardy County, West Virginia.

Count three alleges that COOK, CHAMP, RUNIONS, and CRITES possessed material used in the manufacture of methamphetamine on January 29, 2012, in Hardy County.

Counts four through 10 allege that COOK possessed pseudoephedrine knowing it would be used to manufacture methamphetamine on September 7, September 12, September 16, October 13, October 14, and November 28, 2011; and January 29, 2012.

Counts 11 through 19 allege that CHAMP possessed pseudoephedrine knowing it would be used to manufacture methamphetamine on July 6, July 11, July 20, July 22, October 13, October 21, November 19 and December 18, 2011; and January 23, 2012.

Counts 20 through 28 allege that RUNIONS possessed pseudoephedrine knowing it would be used to manufacture methamphetamine on July 1, July 14, July 22, October 5, October 20, November 19, December 2 and December 7, 2011; and January 29, 2012.

Counts 29 through 32 allege that CRITES possessed pseudoephedrine knowing it would be used to manufacture methamphetamine on July 2 and July 15, 2011; and January 5 and January 27, 2012.

If convicted, the defendants face a maximum penalty of 20 years’ imprisonment and a fine of $1,000,000 as to counts one and two; 10 years’ imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 as to count three; and 20 years’ imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 as to counts four through 32.

The case will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Stephen D. Warner and investigated by the Potomac Highlands Drug and Violent Crimes Task Force, consisting of agents and officers from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the West Virginia State Police-Bureau of Criminal Investigations.

It should be noted that the charges contained in the above-referenced indictment are merely accusations and not evidence of guilt, and that each defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

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