Digital Exclusive: Luzerne County men face drug trafficking charges in Project Safe Neighborhoods case

Digital Exclusive

WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — Five Luzerne County men are facing a multitude of charges including drug trafficking charges and fentanyl dealing that resulted in death, newly unsealed paperwork shows.

The defendants are:

  1. Edwin Tejeda, age 30, of Wilkes-Barre and the Dominican Republic
  2. Jose Raymer Tejeda, age 36, of Wilkes-Barre
  3. Emilio Tejeda, age 32, of Wilkes-Barre
  4. James Garris, Jr., age 51, of Wilkes-Barre
  5. James Tindol, Jr., age 37, of Nanticoke

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, brothers Edwin, Jose Raymer and Emilio were indicted by a federal grand jury in June for conspiring to traffic cocaine and 400 grams or more of fentanyl, between January 2016 and February 2020. Edwin and Jose Raymer Tejeda are charged with causing the death of a person as a result of that conspiracy. Meanwhile, the three are also charged with 19 other drug-related charges.

Eyewitness News first reported the story in February, after a raid on Hazle Street.

The indictment seeks the forfeiture of two Wilkes-Barre properties related to the brothers’ alleged crimes, firearms and $25,000 already seized by law enforcement.

James Garris, Jr. was charged with delivering fentanyl resulting in death and pleaded guilty to the charge back in July. James Tindol Jr. also faces the same charge.

In a related case, The Department of Justice says Kearon Brinson, 40, of West Nanticoke and Lamont Hubbard, 49, of Plymouth have been indicted on drug trafficking and ammunition charges. The indictment alleges that Brinson and Hubbard conspired to traffic an excess of 40 grams of fentanyl between January 2019 and February 2020.

Confidential informants reportedly lead Kingston Police to the discovery that Kearon Brinson would obtain fentanyl from Edwin and Jose Tejeda. Brinson would then allegedly provide the drugs to Hubbard to be packaged and delivered.

The indictment seeks the forfeiture of assorted ammunition and over $3,500. Both defendants are now awaiting trial.

The case is part of the federal Project Safe Neighborhoods program through the Department of Justice. The program is aimed at bringing together different levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce and prevent violent crime. In the Middle District of Pennsylvania, the program focuses on the Harrisburg, York, Wilkes-Barre and Williamsport areas.

For more on how the program operates, see the video below.

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