An Oregon man pleaded guilty in a Missouri federal court after prosecutors accused him of a racketeering scheme.
Court documents filed in the Central Division of the U.S. Western District Court of Missouri on Wednesday show Byron Telford of Medford, Oregon pleaded guilty charged with racketeering involving narcotics. He’s accused in a scheme to distribute marijuana across the country and collect money from drug sales from 2017 to 2018.
Court documents show Telford admitted to working with Craig Smith, who is accused, along with two others in Mid-Missouri, in a separate marijuana distribution case. Reports show Telford gave investigators a video he took of Smith and another suspected drug dealer when he visited Missouri in 2018 to pick up money linked to drug sales.
Court records allege on April 8, 2018, Telford messaged Smith about the money. Documents show Smith directed Telford to meet up with another suspected drug dealer to pick up about $720,000.
Telford allegedly picked up around a ton of marijuana in Connecticut before he arrived in Kansas City. According to the court records, he received the drugs, then rented a vehicle and drove to Kansas City from the east coast.
Investigators said Telford planned to drive back to Oregon in the same rental vehicle with the money and the drugs he received in Kansas City and Connecticut. Telford was pulled over by Oklahoma law enforcement en route to his destination.
Prosecutors said Telford admitted to having about $2.7 million worth of marijuana in the vehicle.
Telford could face up to a year in prison and have to pay up to a $9,500 fine. Online court records show the next court hearing is scheduled for Nov. 6.