Texas man pleads guilty in heroin smuggling ring case

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Darrold Thomas, 37, of Killeen, Texas, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin. The charges carry a maximum term of 40 years, with a mandatory minimum term of five years imprisonment. A sentencing hearing has been scheduled for December 12.

Thomas admitted that he began receiving heroin in 2010 from Saleem Sharif, a former captain in the U.S. Army who was working as a military contractor in Afghanistan. The heroin that Thomas received from Sharif was concealed in DVD cases, with each case containing approximately 2.5 ounces (or 75 grams) of heroin. Thomas acknowledged during the hearing that he received at least 2.5 kilograms from Sharif over the course of their relationship. Sharif has been charged by criminal complaint with heroin trafficking in Delaware.

Thomas also admitted to selling the drug other individuals in Texas, Wilmington, Washington, D.C., and Newark.

Thomas is the 14th individual charged in connection with the Wilmington-based drug organization cto enter a guilty plea. Ten defendants have entered guilty pleas in the United States District Court for Delaware, while four other defendants have entered guilty pleas in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas. Six other individuals remain in custody in Panama.

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