By JOSH NEWTON
An area man accused of being a “major supplier” of methamphetamine to Cherokee County has pleaded guilty in federal court.
Ralph Eugene Johnson, 56, of Peggs, pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled dangerous substance with intent to distribute.
Johnson was charged earlier this year after an investigation by the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office, Tahlequah Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. He was indicted in August.
Federal prosecutors allege Johnson had and intended to distribute meth and marijuana in June when he was arrested by authorities.
Johnson will remain in federal custody under the care of the U.S. Marshal Service until he is sentenced.
The statutory range of punishment is not more than 20 years in prison and up to a $1 million fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle Waters represented the U.S.
When Johnson was arrested, authorities seized around $15,000 in cash, a trailer, vehicles and other items that had been reported stolen from various places. Investigators said Johnson also had oxycodone, hydrocodone, and morphine.