Tuesday, 12 September 2017 12:31

Five reputed Blood members set for arraignment in heroin case

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Arraignments are scheduled in New Bern Wednesday for five reputed members of a Scotland Neck Blood set in a heroin conspiracy.

Electronic court records the five are scheduled to appear at 9:30 a.m.

They are Markell Desettan Wiggins, Collin Lee Whitaker Jr., Kevin Dwayne Carswell, Dantee Brown and Shanta Venita Hines.

The record does not note arraignment dates for Reginald Savage and Bo’Neka McDaniel.

The seven were indicted in June on 15 counts alleging heroin sales of 100 grams or more over a period beginning in 2012 and ending around the time of the indictment.

Only one of the defendants, Hines, was granted pretrial release. Carswell and Brown waived detention hearings and the rest remain in federal custody.

The only documents pertaining to detention hearings which are public are those of Wiggins, McDaniel and Savage.

In the order remanding Wiggins into pretrial custody, United States Magistrate Judge Kimberly A. Swank noted the extent of drug trafficking involved; defendant's role in the drug trafficking operation; weapons involvement; evidence of gang involvement and use of children to avoid detection.

The orders do not go into detail.

Swank determined, “By clear and convincing evidence that no condition or combination of conditions of release will reasonably assure the safety of any other person and the community.”

She noted the weight of evidence against Wiggins is strong and weighed in his prior criminal history and participation in criminal activity while on supervision or release.

In denying McDaniel pretrial release, Swank noted the extent of drug trafficking involved in the case; defendant's role as a leader in what appears to be a sophisticated drug trafficking operation and evidence of gang involvement.

In denying Savage pretrial release Swank considered lack of employment history; extent of drug trafficking activity involved and the defendant's role in distribution of large amounts of drugs.

The indictment identified the seven as members of the Sex Money Murder Blood set.


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