Trent Bussell facing 20 years in pill...

Trent Bussell facing 20 years in pill ring

Posted in the New Tazewell Forum

First Prev
of 2
Next Last
Pills are deadly

Knoxville, TN

#1 Sep 26, 2012
Trent Bussell facing 20 years in pill ring

By Jamie Satterfield
Posted September 18, 2012 at 5:30 a.m.



The commander of an army of "smurfers" in a $6 million prescription pill network has inked a deal with federal prosecutors that, if approved, will put him behind bars for 20 years, court records show.

Kevin Trent Bussell, 37, of Tazewell, Tenn., has struck a deal to confess to being the leader of one of the largest pill conspiracies to be prosecuted by the Knoxville-based U.S. attorney's office.

In an agreement brokered between Assistant U.S. Attorney David Jennings and defense attorney Doug Trant, Bussell is expected to plead guilty to charges that include conspiracy to distribute opiates, money laundering and using guns to protect his drug trade and won't put up a fight to spending the next two decades behind bars for his crimes.

Bussell's operation was based in the sparsely populated locale of Campbell County and began in 2008, according to federal court records. It would take a two-year probe headed up by U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration Agent Bethel "Bubba" Poston and involving other federal, state and local agencies to topple a network that included Bussell and some 50 partners in crime.

According to Bussell's plea agreement, Bussell initially procured pills from an unidentified source in Michigan. When that source dried up, Bussell recruited opiate junkies known in law enforcement circles as "smurfers" to travel to pain clinics in South Florida to score pills, the agreement stated.

"(Bussell) paid for all expenses, including the clinic visits and prescription costs, and arranged for and paid for transportation to the clinics and pharmacies," the agreement states. "The smurfers were all addicted to opiates and smurfed for (Bussell) to obtain monthly quantities of oxycodone for free and to ensure that additional quantities of oxycodone would be available after their personal quantities ran out prior to their next clinic visit."

Bussell, the agreement stated, took half of each prescription his "smurfers" acquired and resold the pills. He and his associates, which included his girlfriend and his mother, amassed a treasure trove of goodies from the cash their pill trade generated, including land, vehicles, personal watercraft, motorcycles, boats and an RV — all of which federal authorities have seized.

Bussell's plea deal does have one deal breaker — his mother, who has launched efforts to fight federal charges that include claims she is mentally incompetent — must confess her guilt, too.

A hearing date for Bussell to enter his guilty plea has not yet been set as a result.
pill town

Knoxville, TN

#2 Sep 26, 2012
Is him mama really mentally indigent? She always seemed like she had good sense to me. I give her a puppy once.
duh

Canton, OH

#3 Sep 26, 2012
All the toys he actually couldn't afford was a red flag....and his lackeys rated probaly........dumba$$ of the year just got taken.
Forrest Gump

Ooltewah, TN

#4 Sep 26, 2012
Pills are good.
just a thought

United States

#6 Sep 28, 2012
Bussell agrees to plead guilty if family receives reduced charges

Posted on Thursday, September 27, 2012 at 10:21 am

The show-me-theirs-and-I’ll-show-y ou-mine plea-bargain dance pairing federal prosecutors and conditionally admitted Claiborne County oxycodone baron Kevin Trent Bussell is rapidly winding down, according to court documents.

Bussell, 37, agreed to plead guilty to drug-trafficking, firearms and money-laundering charges provided his mother, Geneva Bussell, his aunt, Althea Gamble, and his sister, Jessie Wilson, be allowed to plead guilty to greatly reduced charges.

Wilson filed a plea agreement Tuesday that compels her to admit to misprision of a felony, essentially being aware her brother was trafficking painkillers and not reporting the crime to authorities.

Wilson’s maximum penalty is three years in prison, but defendants who plead guilty rarely receive top-of-the-range sentences.

Also Tuesday, Gamble filed a plea agreement that explains her role in laundering drug-sales proceeds, the same offense detailed in Mrs. Bussell’s plea agreement, which was filed on Sept. 14.

The top sentence for money laundering is 20 years, but considering the relatively small amount of money involved — between $30,000 and $70,000 — a federal prison term approaching two decades is all but inconceivable.

Federal prosecutors allege Bussell is responsible for putting $6 million worth of painkillers on the streets.

He began by financing pill-acquisition trips to Michigan, but later shifted operation to South Florida when the pain-management clinic business blossomed there.

The massive quantity of pills Bussell dealt will move him up the federal sentencing range toward the 20-year maximum.

Possessing a firearm during a drug-trafficking offense will add five years on top of whatever Bussell gets for the drug and money-laundering crimes.

One man who was with Bussell from his early days in Michigan was Carson Day, who recently filed a plea agreement that requires him to plead guilty to conspiracy to distribute oxycodone.

Day apparently was Bussell’s trusted confidante.

At Bussell’s direction, Day rented a residence in St. Petersburg, Fla. Conspiracy members stayed at the house during doctor-shopping trips, according to his plea agreement.

- By Robert Moore, Tribune Staff Writer
HappyHappy

Tazewell, TN

#7 Sep 29, 2012
I say there are more main dealer out there beside him.
Sue Bob

Knoxville, TN

#8 Sep 29, 2012
I'd say the lure of the easy money was what did him in & what did his family and friends in too. I'm about sure all those people couldn't be bad to the core to start with. It was probably the easy money came first then the crippling addiction. From there it was a slippery slope....all down hill. I did hear Trent was power hungry and made some people do some bad things to get the drugs from him and this was awful but surely they didn't all start out bad. I've met too many good Claiborne county people to believe this.
HappyHappy

Tazewell, TN

#9 Sep 29, 2012
Money root of all evil ..Thats a prime example..
old timer

Tazewell, TN

#10 Sep 29, 2012
with good behavior he will only have to pull one third of the time.they will give him credit for the two years he has been in custody that leaves about five more years he will have to pull.i would say he is real happy with this deal.
just a thought

United States

#11 Sep 29, 2012
old timer wrote:
with good behavior he will only have to pull one third of the time.they will give him credit for the two years he has been in custody that leaves about five more years he will have to pull.i would say he is real happy with this deal.
I think Fed time is for full amount.
Butterflys are FREE

Knoxville, TN

#12 Sep 30, 2012
In the federal system you plead guilty and get 20 years you do 20 years.
old timer wrote:
with good behavior he will only have to pull one third of the time.they will give him credit for the two years he has been in custody that leaves about five more years he will have to pull.i would say he is real happy with this deal.
teresa

United States

#13 Sep 30, 2012
No if you are found guilty of a federal crime you have to do 85% of time, i happen to know cause my husband is locked up in a federal jail looking to go to prison and i was told that by a fed agent
a question

Knoxville, TN

#14 Oct 16, 2012
What happened to the houseboat?
A friend

United States

#15 Oct 17, 2012
Houseboat was seized by the I.R.S will be sold at auction along with all the other assets that were taken. And yes in the federal system you must do 85% before you are eligible for parole
Just wondering

Monticello, KY

#16 Nov 5, 2012
What about the Mize family? Did they get any time?
Red bird

Albemarle, NC

#17 Nov 8, 2012
Billy Mize pleaded. Got 5 years in the federal prison system.
get your facts straight

Greer, SC

#18 Nov 8, 2012
Just wondering wrote:
What about the Mize family? Did they get any time?
Billy Mize was the only Mize that was involved in Trent's drug ring & yes he is currently serving his time. Rest the Mize family are doing just fine but thanks for being so concerned about them tho!
Not fair

Tazewell, TN

#19 Nov 8, 2012
The people who were addicts do not deserve such long prison sentences.
They have been in prison or two years that's enough for bing addicted to pills. Trent bussell was a drug lord, he and his family reaped the benefits from the addicts. They deserve twenty years. Geneva bussell needs o keep her butt, away from people's sentence what's it any of her business.
Not fair

Tazewell, TN

#20 Nov 8, 2012
pill town wrote:
Is him mama really mentally indigent? She always seemed like she had good sense to me. I give her a puppy once.
She urge didn't look mentally indigent two weeks ago at Trent masons sentencing, she was dressed to the nines, pretty haircut and makeup, and those Bussels got all the goodies the drug addicts just got high
Romans

New Tazewell, TN

#21 Nov 10, 2012
Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”

Tell me when this thread is updated:

Subscribe Now Add to my Tracker
First Prev
of 2
Next Last

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

New Tazewell Discussions

Title Updated Last By Comments
dtr gossip 11 hr no name 4
Who out there knows/likes Ami Vanover?? (Jun '09) 19 hr Rockwood 22
Chumley Trucking Sun IMNOSEY2 1
Maci coffee Sun Judges 12
England Furniture (Jul '08) Sun Melissa 32
Why is there not a redlight at the Walmart? Jun 24 hum 15
denver maples (Oct '12) Jun 23 Autumn truax 28

New Tazewell Jobs

More from around the web

Personal Finance

New Tazewell Mortgages