GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN — U.S. Attorney Andrew Birge announced today that Jimmie “Peanut” Butler pled guilty to conspiring to distribute more than 100 grams of heroin and to possessing with intent to distribute cocaine base. Five of his co-defendants had previously pled guilty to federal charges stemming from the distribution of heroin in the Holland, Michigan area. The conspiracy, which trafficked heroin from Chicago into the Holland area and the Upper Peninsula is linked to numerous overdoses and at least one death.
“In the face of the opioid epidemic, the U.S. Attorney’s Office aggressively pursues those who poison our communities with heroin,” said U.S. Attorney Birge. “This outcome is the result of the cooperation of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, which have jointly worked to investigate, charge and incarcerate those who take advantage of addicts for profit and spread heroin addiction.”
“The Butler investigation was a great example of the West Michigan Enforcement Team’s efforts to target the opioid epidemic in West Michigan,” said D/F/Lt. Andy Fias, WEMET Section Commander. “This investigation was also another great example of the cooperative efforts between federal, state and local agencies. That relationship is another reason these cases are successful.”
On August 15, 2017, a federal grand jury filed a superseding indictment against Jimmie Butler, Charles Oakley, Michael McKinley, Jimmy Moore, Corey Gross, and Monique Molina. The conspiracy spanned from as early as 2012 until July 2017, when the group was initially indicted. Michael McKinley was sentenced to 24 months’ incarceration. Corey Gross was sentenced to 46 months’ incarceration. Monique Molina was sentenced to 24 months’ incarceration. The remaining defendants have not yet been sentenced. Jimmy Moore faces a mandatory minimum of five years and up to 40 years in prison. Jimmie Butler and Charles Oakley face mandatory minimum sentences of ten years and up to life in prison.
This matter was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Michigan State Police – West Michigan Enforcement Team, the Holland Department of Public Safety, and the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sally Berens and Timothy VerHey prosecuted the case.