Co-defendant in federal Grundy case to plead guilty to trafficking in heroin, meth

Posted at 6:17 PM, Mar 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-19 20:54:05-04

INDIANAPOLIS -- One of 26 defendants in the federal case against convicted Indianapolis drug trafficker Richard Grundy III has agreed to plead guilty and cooperate with prosecutors, according to documents filed Monday in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana.

Frankie B. Ray, 29, was charged along with more than two dozen others on Nov. 20, 2017, as part of an alleged multi-state organization that trafficked heroin and meth and conspired to launder the proceeds.

Ray’s alleged co-conspirators in that organization included Grundy and several associates. Grundy escaped all but a single count of dealing marijuana in August 2017 stemming from a 2015 case in which Marion County prosecutors accused him and 10 others of the murders of seven people in Indianapolis, along with more than 100 drug-trafficking related charges.

READ MORE | ‘Grundy Crew’ case ends with almost all charges dropped | The 'Grundy Crew' has a long history in Indianapolis. It may have caught up with them.

Three months after Grundy pleaded guilty in that case, he and 25 others – including Ray – were rounded up by federal authorities on new charges for their alleged roles in a large-scale drug trafficking ring that moved methamphetamine from Arizona to be distributed in Indianapolis.

READ MORE | Richard Grundy III, 25 others charged in multi-state meth & money laundering conspiracy

On Monday, Ray agreed to plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine in connection to that case, and to one count of conspiracy to distribute 1,000 grams or more of heroin from an earlier federal case filed in August 2017.

Ray was one of seven co-defendants in the August 2017 case which targeted Michael Sublett – the alleged leader of an Indianapolis-based heroin-trafficking cell between at least May 26 and June 24, 2017.

According to a factual basis filed as part of Ray’s plea deal, Ray was Sublett’s principal heroin distributor. On at least one occasion, on May 30, 2017, one of the people Ray allegedly delivered heroin to overdosed and was committed to Community South Hospital in Indianapolis.

Ray’s alleged role in the November 2017 case involving Grundy was also as a drug distributor. According to the plea, one of Grundy’s primary meth dealers, Lance Hatcher, allegedly provided an ounce of meth to Ray on at least one occasion in June 2017. Ray allegedly then distributed the drugs at the Constitution Gardens apartment complex in Indianapolis.

In exchange for the plea, federal prosecutors have agreed to drop four remaining charges stemming from the heroin-trafficking case and to group the two charges against Ray for purposes of sentencing.

Ray faces a potential sentence of 20 years to life imprisonment on the heroin distribution charge, along with a fine of up to $5 million, and a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison on the meth distribution charge.

In November, a federal judge ordered Grundy and several other co-defendants held without bond pending resolution of the case. A trial date has not yet been set.

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