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Date: 07-09-2024

Case Style:

United States of America v. Eric Bernard Russell, Jr; Winrose Ndichu

Case Number:

Judge: Mark S. Norris

Court: The United States District Court for the Western District of Tennessee

Plaintiff's Attorney: The United States Attorney’s Office for Memphis

Defendant's Attorney:

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Description:

Memphis, TN criminal defense lawyer represented the Defendant charged with Counterfeit Prescription Drug Distribution Operation

Texas Residents Sentenced For Their Involvement in a Counterfeit Prescription Drug Distribution Operation



A pair of Texas residents have been sentenced to federal prison resulting from their involvement in a counterfeit prescription drug distribution operation involving methamphetamine and counterfeit Adderall to various locations within the United States, including Western Tennessee. Kevin G. Ritz, United States Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee, announced the sentencings today.

Winrose Ndichu, 33, was convicted of aiding and abetting the structuring of financial transactions to evade reporting requirements, and Eric Bernard Russell, Jr., 39, was convicted of conspiracy to commit money laundering. Kevin Olando Ombisi, 35, was previously sentenced to 210 months imprisonment for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, distribution and attempted distribution of methamphetamine, sale of counterfeit Adderall, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and mail fraud.

According to information presented in Court, in November 2019, law enforcement began conducting undercover buys of purported Adderall from a vendor known as CARDINGMASTER on the Darknet. CARDINGMASTER advertised “100% AUTHENTIC Adderall Brand 30 mg” pills for sale. Narcotics sold by CARDINGMASTER were shipped from Texas to the Western District of Tennessee in exchange for Bitcoin cryptocurrency. Although the drugs appeared consistent with what was advertised for sale (amphetamine-based prescription Adderall), laboratory testing indicated that the drugs received did not contain the active pharmaceutical ingredient contained in Adderall, but in fact contained the Schedule II controlled substance methamphetamine.

A financial investigation revealed that proceeds from these sales were funneled through fictitious businesses, various bank accounts, and in the form of cryptocurrency in an effort to conceal the unlawful nature of the source of these proceeds. These transactions were directed by Ombisi and conducted by Ndichu. In a span of one year, Ndichu withdrew more than $250,000 from these accounts in increments of less than $10,000 to avoid federal reporting requirements, knowing that these funds were proceeds of unlawful activity or intended to promote the unlawful activity.

United States District Court Judge Mark S. Norris sentenced Russell to 42 months of imprisonment on March 28, 2024. On June 27, 2024, Judge Norris sentenced Ndichu to 18 months of imprisonment. There is no parole in the federal system.

This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Nashville Field Division; the Food and Drug Administration Office of Criminal Investigation (FDA-OCI); Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), El Paso; the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS); and our local law enforcement partners.

United States Attorney Kevin G. Ritz thanked Assistant United States Attorney Michelle Kimbril-Parks, who prosecuted this case, as well as our law enforcement partners who investigated this case.

Outcome:

Defendants were found guilty and

Eric Bernard Russell, Jr. sentenced to 42 months of imprisonment

Winrose Ndichu sentenced to 18 months of imprisonment

Plaintiff's Experts:

Defendant's Experts:

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