BEAUMONT, Texas – A 41-year-old
Buffalo, New York, man has pleaded guilty to drug trafficking violations in the
Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney Joseph D. Brown today.
Roosevelt Appleton, St., pleaded
guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine today before
U.S. Magistrate Judge Zack Hawthorn.
According to information presented
in court, beginning in 2015, following his release from state prison in New
York, Appleton began conspiring with others to traffic drugs through the
Eastern District of Texas to the Houston area. Appleton employed various
means to facilitate the scheme including the use of the U.S. Postal Service,
Federal Express and specially outfitted vehicles that contained hidden
compartments. On June 15, 2016, a vehicle driven by Appleton’s couriers was
stopped for a traffic violation in Jefferson County, Texas. A search of
the vehicle revealed six bundles of cocaine hidden in a secret compartment in
the vehicle. Appleton admitted to being responsible for the distribution
of between 15 and 50 kilograms of cocaine as part of this conspiracy.
Appleton was indicted by a federal grand jury on Oct. 18,
Under federal statutes, Appleton faces a minimum of ten years in federal prison
at sentencing. The minimum statutory sentence prescribed by Congress is
provided here for information purposes, as the sentencing will be determined by
the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory
factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a
presentence investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.
This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the
Beaumont Police Department and the Houston Police Department. This case
is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Randall
L. Fluke and John Craft.