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Drug charges for group accused of sending meth in teddy bears

Teddy bears are adorable toys designed for children -- but several criminal defendants are accused of using these cuddly animals for a nefarious purpose. Authorities say that several people were extradited to Michigan in late 2013 for drug charges after they allegedly mailed teddy bears stuffed with methamphetamine to a post office in Zeeland. Three people from Ottowa County have already been convicted and sentenced to lengthy terms, while two people who mailed the bears from California are awaiting sentencing.

Authorities estimate that the crystal meth was mailed to Michigan about twice a week between 2009 and May 2013. Several pounds of the drug apparently made their way to Michigan inside the teddy bears, which were delivered to a trailer home in Zeeland. One pound of the drug is reportedly equivalent to about 6,000 doses of crystal meth.

Authorities say that several workers were employed as delivery runners after the meth arrived in Michigan. One man was arrested in late 2012 for trafficking the drug in Holland; he has already been sentenced to a 13-year term for the drug charges. That investigation led officers to a common-law couple at a mobile home park who had allegedly been selling the drug. The man was sentenced to more than 14 years for the drug trafficking charges, while the woman received a term of more than 17 years. Two sisters who sent the drugs from California are still awaiting sentencing for their drug charges.

Defendants who are facing interstate drug crimes may have special needs in criminal court. These clients may benefit from the assistance of a Michigan attorney, who can help them learn more about their legal rights and options. An attorney can serve as a valuable ally from arraignment through sentencing and beyond.

Source: WZZM 13, "Teddy bears stuffed with crystal methamphetamine" John Hogan, Mar. 28, 2014

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