Beltran, of Cedartown, is among more than 20 people charged last April with being part of a conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute several controlled substances: methamphetamine, marijuana and prescription drugs, namely Xanax, an anti-depressant, and Lorcet, a painkiller.
According to federal, state and local officials who teamed up to investigate the scheme, at least 600 pounds of methamphetamine worth about $10,000 per pound on the street was distributed by the defendants between July 2001 and October 2004. The drugs were allegedly taking from Cedartown to Northeast Alabama for further distribution and resale.
All other defendants implicated in the case have already entered guilty pleas in the case, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney Kim Dammers.
Authorities suspect that nine relatively recent murders in Floyd and Polk counties are linked to the group. Federal indictments are pending on those charges, Dammers said.
For the complete story, see Tuesdays edition of the Rome News-Tribune.