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Federal charges surface for three allegedly in ‘Mama’s’ family drug-dealing ring

WILLISTON -- Three people who were nabbed in Williston during the winter on heroin trafficking charges, along with a 51-year-old woman nicknamed "Mama" who headed a family drug-selling organization selling drugs across North Dakota and the wester...

WILLISTON - Three people who were nabbed in Williston during the winter on heroin trafficking charges, along with a 51-year-old woman nicknamed “Mama” who headed a family drug-selling organization selling drugs across North Dakota  and the western United States -- have been linked to a multistate drug ring and indicted in federal court.

Augustine Jackson, 31, William Barker, 30 and Geena Milho, 25, were arrested in February after federal and state investigators allegedly found drugs and items for selling drugs, along with thousands in cash, in a condominium complex where the three were living.

The three are charged with conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, according to an expanded indictment filed late last month by prosecutors in Idaho.

Barker, Jackson and Milho, along with six other people, are accused of selling heroin, methamphetamine and oxycodone “beginning in at least 2009 and continuing to at least 2016,” documents say.

Federal authorities seized $2,700 from Milho and Jackson’s residence, and nearly $13,000 from the condo shared by Barker and Loren Toelle.

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Toelle, 51, who prosecutors say was known as “Mama” in the Williston area, allegedly served as the head of a family organization that sold drugs in northwest North Dakota as well as Fargo, and in Washington, Nevada, Montana and Idaho.

She was arrested in January along with six others as part of a long-term FBI investigation in northern Idaho.

The group, which included Toelle’s daughter, Sherlann Simon, 34, her sons Sean Jackson, 27, and Steven Jackson, 30, a friend, Kristin Wilson, 28, and Toelle’s husband, Stanley Toelle, 61, a doctor in Idaho, often traveled between Las Vegas and Williston, and brought in more than $1 million from drug sales, authorities say.  A number of those arrested  face money laundering charges.

Robert Hill, who prosecutors say is Loren Toelle’s brother, faces the same charges. He was arrested in Williston in January.

A federal grand jury on indicted the ring on Jan. 20 for conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, distribution of controlled substances and conspiracy to engage in money laundering. Barker, Milho and Jackson were included in the indictment on April 19.

Local charges against Milho and Jackson, which included child endangerment, were dropped last week by the Williams County State’s Attorney’s Office.

Authorities said at the time of the pair’s arrest, a 9-month-old baby was inside the home that the two shared.

The case against Barker remains open in district court, where he faces allegations of possession of heroin with intent to deliver, a Class A felony, and three counts of possession of drug paraphernalia.

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A call to federal prosecutors in Idaho was not immediately returned on Monday.

A trial is scheduled on Sept. 6 in Coeur D’Alene, Idaho.

Related Topics: FAMILY
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