Central Texas Meth Investigation Leads To 8 Guilty Pleas

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GATESVILLE (November 3, 2010)--A 10-month investigation into manufacture and distribution of methamphetamine in Central Texas has led to eight arrests and all eight of the residents who were arrested have since pleaded guilty.

Arrested in the probe were Tina Louise Wicker, 44, of Gatesville, Cary Eugene Buth, 48, of Gatesville, Lee Ann Parker, 32, of Gatesville, Virginia Frye Miller, 53, of Gatesville, Waylon Lewis Dyer, 41, of Gatesville, Tommy Lee Owens, 34, of McGregor, Barry Brent Swarb, 55, of Gatesville and Frank Nicholas Butler, 42, of Waco.

Wicker was sentenced to five years and three months in federal prison, followed by five years supervised release.

Buth was sentenced to 10 years incarceration and five years supervised release.

Owens was sentenced to 19 years, six month in federal prison followed by five years supervised release;

Parker, Miller, Swarb, Butler and Dyer are awaiting sentencing in U.S. District Court in Waco.

The investigation began in Coryell County, but authorities determined the reach of the enterprise stretched beyond the county's boundaries.

Coryell County Sheriff's investigators requested help from the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Drug Enforcement Administration office in Waco.

In the ten months that followed, investigators from the Coryell County Sheriffs Office, the Gatesville Police Department, agents of the DPS and Special Agents DEA conducted a series of undercover operations purchasing various amounts of methamphetamine ranging from grams to ounces from several local and non-local drug dealers.

Between February and September 2010, authorities arrested eight members of the organization.

They all pleaded guilty to federal charges.

FRANK NICHOLAS BUTLER, Jr. – age 42 - Waco, TX Count 1 - Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute at Least 500 grams of Methamphetamine, a Schedule II Controlled Substance. (Jail photo)

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