ST. LOUIS – A federal grand jury returned a guilty verdict Wednesday against a Los Angeles man for his role in a large-scale drug ring in the St. Louis area.
According to court documents, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) launched a long-term investigation of a fentanyl and cocaine distribution organization in St. Louis several years ago. Agents identified Gerald Hunter as the out-of-state supplier for the St. Louis organization.
In April 2017, agents conducted a raid in Florissant tied to the drug ring. They seized 27 kilograms of fentanyl, with a street value of approximately $1 million. According to the DEA, it was the largest seizure in the region at the time. Federal agents said Hunter was holding bags containing narcotics before he managed to evade authorities and escape arrest.
Hunter was on the run for more than three years before his arrest. The US Marshals Service tracked Hunter down in Los Angeles in May 2020 and took him into federal custody.
Over the course of the investigation, authorities seized fentanyl, cocaine, US currency, firearms, and hydraulic drug presses.
Hunter was convicted of conspiracy to distribute more than 400 grams of fentanyl, possession with intent to distribute more than 400 grams of fentanyl, conspiracy to distribute cocaine, and two counts of money laundering.
Hunter, 55, faces anywhere from 10 years to life imprisonment for his crimes. The U.S. district judge overseeing the case has not set a sentencing date.