Federal indictment accuses two of conspiracy to traffic meth

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A federal judge in Texarkana unsealed a drug trafficking indictment Monday after the second of two co-defendants appeared in court.

Joshea Cardwell, 29, appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Caroline Craven for arraignment Friday with Texarkana attorney David Potter. Justin Rashad Young, 29, appeared Monday before Craven for arraignment with Texarkana attorney Cory Floyd.

The three-count indictment pending in the Texarkana Division of the Eastern District of Texas alleges that the men conspired to traffic more than 50 grams of methamphetamine in the Texarkana area in June 2017. Count two of the indictment alleges the men possessed with the intent to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine June 28, 2017. The third count of the indictment alleges the men carried a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking offense on the same date, June 28, 2017.

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Cardwell was released by Craven on a $5,000 unsecured appearance bond. Young remains in custody. He is scheduled for a detention hearing Thursday to determine whether he will remain in custody until trial or be free while his case is pending.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Hornok is prosecuting both defendants.

The men face five to 40 years in federal prison and a fine up to $5 million if convicted of the conspiracy charge. If convicted of possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, Cardwell and Young face the same punishment range and fine as for conspiracy. If found guilty of carrying a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking offense, the men face five years to life in prison and a fine up to $250,000. Any sentence for the firearm charge must be served after any sentence for conspiracy or possession.

The government is seeking the men’s forfeiture of a Taurus pistol and 12 rounds of ammunition, three cell phones and $2,007 in cash. The cases are set for trial before U.S. District Judge Robert Schroeder III on Feb. 25 in Texarkana.

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