UPDATE: Benton Attorney Dustin Dyer, 19 Others Indicted in Meth Ring

by Arkansas Business Staff  on Tuesday, Jun. 14, 2011 2:21 pm  

Daniel "Dano" Henry Jr. of Austin, right, who won $100,000 in the Arkansas Lottery in September 2010, is now accused of being the kingpin of a methamphetamine ring operating in central Arkansas. Ironically, the man posing with Henry and his wife Rebecca i

The indictment of Benton attorney Dustin Dyer and 19 others on a total of 18 counts related to the operation of a methamphetamine ring was announced Tuesday by U.S. Attorney Chris Thyer of Little Rock and William J. Bryant, the special agent in charge of the federal Drug Enforcement Administration in Little Rock. 

The multi-agency investigation, which began in November, was called "Operation Big Winner" because the alleged kingpin,  Daniel "Dano" Henry Jr. of Austin (Lonoke County), claimed a $100,000 prize in the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery last September. The indictment was handed down by a federal grand jury a week ago and unsealed shortly before a press conference Tuesday afternoon.

Dyer was not charged with conspiracy but with using a telephone in furtherance of a drug crime.

Henry's organization was distributing between 5 to 10 pounds of meth per week, according to Bryant. Seven pounds of "ice," the smokable form of meth, was confiscated during raids that followed the indictment, including one pound from Henry's property and six pounds hidden in PVC pipes buried in flower beds at the Kensett (White County) home of two other defendants, Christian "Primo" Maldonado and Gladis Maldonado, who is also known as Gladis Gameros. The Maldonados, who are married, are accused of smuggling the meth from Mexico for distribution by Henry and members of his organization.

The U.S. Attorney's office in Little Rock is seeking to recover $2 million in proceeds from the alleged methamphetamine operation. Property being targeted for forfeiture includes Henry's house in Austin, a yellow Hummer and a black Corvette.

"This investigation targeted a large scale drug trafficking organization distributing multipound quantities of methamphetamine ice in the central Arkansas area," according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney's office. "The methamphetamine
ice was smuggled from Mexico to Central Arkansas for distribution."

Others accused of conspiracy were Rebecca Henry, Dano Henry's wife; Michael Myers; Patrick Linn; Jason Holmes; Brent Amaden; Michael Himstedt; Michael "Mike D" Leszczyna; John Henry Youngblood Jr.; Oather Lee "Lebo" Fulmer; Rex Ingle; Paul Criswell; Paul Criswell; Paul Simpkins, Matthew Griffey and Aleshia Johnston.

Dano Henry's mother, Margaret Diann Henry, and his sister, Jennifer Mize, were each charged with a single count of misprision of a felony - that is, knowing about illegal activity but doing nothing to stop it. 

Seventeen of the defendant had been apprehended and some were still in custody, Bryant said at the press conference. Dyer, the Benton attorney, was arrested early Tuesday afternoon. The defendants who were still at large were Holmes, Johnston and Fulmer.



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