Buprenorphine indictments issued


By Reina P. Cunningham - [email protected]



The following individuals were recently indicted by the Bell County Grand Jury with at least one charge involving buprenorphine, a generic form of Subutex. According to WebMD, these drugs are used to treat dependence/addiction to narcotics (opioids).

* Johnny Pat Howard, 59, of Pineville, two counts of second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and second-degree persistent felony offender. According to the true bill, on or about Sept. 16, Howard trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic, on or about Oct. 28, Howard trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic and on that same time and place Howard committed the offense of second-degree persistent felony offender by being more than 21 years of age and have been convicted of one prior felony.

* Anthony K. Cloud, 55, of Middlesboro, two counts of second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance. According to the true bill, on or about Dec. 11, Cloud trafficked a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic, on or about Jan. 9, 2015, Howard trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic and on or about the same date Cloud trafficked in hydrocodone, a schedule III narcotic.

* Joey Philpot, 41, of Pineville, first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and first-degree persistent felony offender. According to the true bill, on or about March 16, 2015, Philpot trafficked more than 10 dosage units of hydrocodone, a schedule III narcotic and that on or about the same date Philpot trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic, and that at the same time and place Philpot committed the offense of first-degree persistent felony offender by being more than 21 years of age and have been convicted of two or more prior felonies.

* Merlin Nickels, 52, of Mount Sterling, two counts of first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance. According to the true bill, on or about Jan. 22, 2015, Nickels trafficked in a first-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in hydrocodone and that on or about the same date Nickels trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic, that on or about Jan. 23, 2015, Nickels trafficked more than 10 dosage units of hydrocodone, a schedule III narcotic and that on or about the same date Nickels trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic.

* Merlin Nickels, 52, of Mount Sterling, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and first-degree persistent felony offender. According to the true bill, on or about Feb. 6, 2015, Nickels trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic, and that at the same time and place Nickels committed the offense of first-degree persistent felony offender by being more than 21 years of age and have been convicted of two or more prior felonies.

* Donald Wayne Lingar, 40, of Middlesboro, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and first-degree persistent felony offender. According to the true bill, on or about Sept. 9, Lingar trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic and at the same time and place Lingar committed the offense of first-degree persistent felony offender by being more than 21 years of age and have been convicted of two or more prior felonies.

* Alex R. Turner, 21, of Pineville, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance. According to the true bill, on or about Nov. 25, Turner trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic, that on or about Dec. 2, trafficked in a first-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in hydrocodone, a schedule III narcotic, that on or about the same date Turner trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic.

* Richard W. Leach, 54, of Pineville, two counts of second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance. According to the true bill, on or about July 23, 2014, Leach trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic, and that on or about the same date Leach trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic.

* Edith Joyelle Sanders, 36, of Pineville, first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance. According to the true bill, on or about March 4, Sanders trafficked in a first-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in oxycodone, a schedule II narcotic, and that on or about the same date Sanders trafficked in a second-degree controlled substance by knowingly and unlawfully trafficking in buprenorphine, a schedule III narcotic.

All of these cases are set for Aug. 21.

Reach Reina P. Cunningham at 606-302-9091 or on Twitter @ReinaDailyNews.

By Reina P. Cunningham

[email protected]

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