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Thursday, July 31, 2014, 2:58 a.m.
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11 sentenced in Fort Smith-based meth ring

By Ashley Nerbovig

This article was published May 30, 2014 at 7:17 a.m.

Eleven members of an active drug-trafficking organization and were sentenced to prison after a two-year investigation by law enforcement, federal prosecutors said.

Gerardo Gamboa, 36, of Forth Smith was sentenced to 20 years in prison for distributing more than 50 grams of methamphetamine. Ten others in his organization were sentenced to prison, and seven await sentencing.

Gamboa was bringing in and selling pound quantities of methaphetamine to the Arkansas River Valley area and distributing them to lower-level drug dealers and users, U.S. Attorney Conner Eldridge said in a statement.

The investigation into Gamboa's drug trafficking came out of a larger investigation known as "Operation Shaw-Crank Redemption," which targeted trafficking in the Fort Smith and Arkansas River Valley area. The operation has resulted in 49 arrests and prosecutions, including Gamboa's organiization, and the seizure of 22 pounds of methamphetamine.

The following were the others sentenced in the case:

• Salvador Guerrero-Lopez, 30, of Los Angeles, was sentenced to 11 years, three months months in prison for possession with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of methamphetamine.

• Miguel Gonzalez, 22, of Fort Smith was sentenced to 5 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.

• Huy Tran, 34, of Fort Smith, was sentenced to 5 years in prison for distributing methamphetamine.

• Sabrina Shepard, 25, of Fort Smith was sentenced to 4 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.

• Michael Rouell, 37, of Muskogee, Okla., was sentenced to 12 1/2 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute.

• Curtis Atkins, 48, of Spiro, Okla., was sentenced to 10 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute.

• Ana Esparza, 30, of Fort Smith, was sentenced to 8 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute.

J• essica Sparks, 29, of Keota, Okla., was sentenced to 10 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute.

• Maria Terresa Hernandez, 41, of Fort Smith was sentenced to 3 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute.

• Abraham Jaimes, 28, of Fort Smith was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute.

The final defendants in this case are set to be sentenced in June.

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