Two Men Admit Trying to Bring 100 Pounds of Methamphetamine to the St. Louis Area
ST. LOUIS - Two men pleaded guilty Wednesday and admitted trying to pick up 100 pounds of methamphetamine that was being brought to the St. Louis area from Colorado.
Demond Benard McDaniels Jr., 26, of St. Charles, and Dawuane Lamont Rhodes Jr., 25, of St. Louis, each pleaded guilty in front of U.S. District Judge Matthew T. Schelp to one felony count of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine.
The case stemmed from an Oct. 8, 2020 traffic stop in Kansas. A Geary County Sheriff’s deputy stopped a van and found two duffle bags containing roughly 100 pounds of methamphetamine that was being driven from Colorado to the St. Louis area. The Drug Enforcement Administration then arranged for the controlled delivery of the drugs to McDaniels.
McDaniels first arranged to have Rhodes pick up and pay for the methamphetamine at a University City garage. After Rhodes arrived and was arrested with $15,005 in cash, an assault-style weapon and a pistol, McDaniels was told that Rhodes didn’t show. McDaniels was then arrested with $6,930 in cash and jewelry when he came to pick up the methamphetamine.
Investigators later found $93,820 in cash and a pistol at McDaniels’ home.
Both men agreed as part of their pleas to forfeit more than $155,000 seized during the investigation, as well as a 2016 Dodge Charger Hellcat, a 2015 Mercedes Sprinter van and a 2015 Dodge Charger Hellcat.
McDaniels is scheduled to be sentenced January 31 and Rhodes on February 1. The charge carries a potential penalty of up to 20 years in prison.
The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.
This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.