Federal jury finds Louisville men guilty of conspiring to distribute fentanyl and heroin, distributing fentanyl, and firearms offenses


Date: November 2, 2022

Contact: newsroom@ci.irs.gov

Louisville, KY — Yesterday, a federal jury convicted two local men of a drug trafficking conspiracy involving heroin and 40 grams or more of fentanyl, multiple counts of distribution of fentanyl, possession with intent to distribute 40 grams or more of fentanyl, and several federal firearms crimes.

U.S. Attorney Michael A. Bennett of the Western District of Kentucky, Special Agent in Charge Jodi Cohen of the FBI Louisville Field Office, Special Agent in Charge R. Shawn Morrow of the ATF Louisville Field Division, and Chief Erika Shields of the Louisville Metro Police Department made the announcement.

According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, between December 7, 2017, and July 15, 2020, Frank Trammell, Jr. and Khalid Ashanti Raheem, II conspired to distribute fentanyl and heroin in the Louisville area. Additionally, on ten occasions, Trammell, often assisted by Raheem or others, sold fentanyl to undercover informants at various locations in eastern and southern Jefferson County as well as in the downtown area. These fentanyl sales took place in parking lots of restaurants, gas stations, and grocery stores, and always involved two vehicles parking window to window while fentanyl and cash were tossed from vehicle to vehicle.

Pursuant to court authorized wiretaps, over 3,000 drug related phone calls and text messages were intercepted in a thirty-day period. During these intercepted calls, dozens of drug transactions on a nearly daily basis were arranged. Drug addicted customers, when unable to come up with cash, would sometimes trade packages of socks and underwear, firearms, or assorted prescription medications in exchange for what they believed to be heroin. However, DEA laboratory testing established that Trammell was almost always selling fentanyl to those seeking heroin. During one intercepted call, a drug user called Trammell and said that she believed he had sold her fentanyl and that he should warn his other customers to "be careful."

Evidence presented at trial also included the results of several search warrants of premises and vehicles simultaneously executed on July 15, 2020. From locations related to Trammell and Raheem, law enforcement seized over 240 grams of fentanyl, $284,000 in cash, assorted ammunition, and eleven firearms, including at least one assault rifle and one stolen handgun.

The jury also convicted Trammell of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime and two counts of possessing a firearm as a convicted felon. Raheem was also convicted of one count of possessing a firearm as a convicted felon.

Sentencing for both defendants is scheduled for February 28, 2023, before a U.S. District Court Judge for the Western District of Kentucky. Trammell faces a minimum sentence of fifteen years in prison and a maximum sentence of life in prison. Raheem faces a minimum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum sentence of forty years in prison. There is no parole in the federal system. Trammell remains in federal custody, and Raheem was taken into custody following the verdict.

This case was investigated by the FBI, the ATF, and the Louisville Metro Police Department, with assistance from the DEA, the IRS Criminal Investigation, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, the U.S. Marshals Service, the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office, the St. Matthews Police Department, the Jeffersontown Police Department, the Shepherdsville Police Department, the Kentucky State Police, and the Indiana State Police.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Erin McKenzie and Assistant U.S. Attorney Frank E. Dahl, III prosecuted the case.

This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach.