10 Arrested In Multi Year Investigation
by KDLT News
May 10, 2013 10:00 AM
What appears to be a gun and drug trafficking ring in South Dakota has been busted by federal agents.
ATF agents arrested ten people in Watertown Thursday.
39-year-old Sean Jason Romanjenko of Deadwood is charged with felon in possession of a firearm, 31-year-old Tracy Kay Voss of Watertown is charged with making false statements in the acquisition of firearms, 46-year-old Todd Karl Bramer of Watertown is charged with possession of firearms by a prohibited person, and 72-year-old Robert Gray Graham of Watertown is charged with wire fraud.
If convicted, Romanjenko, Voss and Bramer face 10 years in prison and/or a $250,000 fine. Graham faces 30 years in prison and/or a $1 million fine.
37-year-old Eric Allen Block of Watertown, 55-year-old Patricio Rodriguez Pena of Sioux Falls, 41-year-old Robin Lee Engel of Watertown, 39-year-old Christopher McDaniel Schmidt of Watertown, 42-year-old Richard Donald Ruml of Watertown, and 40-year-old Chad Everic Haight of Watertwon are all charged with conspiracy to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine.
If convicted, Block, Pena, Engel, Schmidt, Ruml, and Haight could face a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison, maximum life, a $10 million fine, or both.
Operation "black widow" as it's being called has been going on for several years. U.S. Attorney Brendan Johnson says the 10 suspects were arrested after a "multi year" investigation.
Special agent in charge, Scott Sweetow says those arrested have broken state and federal laws, and some of them have been involved in violent crimes.
Pena, Block, Haight, and Romanjenko are in jail, the rest were released on special conditions.
While this was a federal operation, local law enforcement was brought in on the case to make the arrests.