07-02-2005, 07:50 AM #1
TN - Operation Rose Thorn: Investigation of lawlessness in Cocke County
Under a deal, Larry Joe Dodgin agrees to cooperate in what federal prosecutors reveal is a wide-ranging and continuing probe of lawlessness in the East Tennessee county.
In Greeneville Friday, Assistant U-S Attorney Nancy Harr told the court that the FBI, the TBI and other agencies have been investigating Cocke County for more than four years.
The areas of interest -- organized gambling, drugs, prostitution, interstate motor vehicle theft and racketeering.Just when I think that I have seen the most depraved things a human can do to another human, somebody posts a new story...........
Why is it that when a custodial parent fails to provide for a child it is called neglect and is a criminal matter. But when a non custodial parent fails to provide it is called failure to support and is a civil matter?
"Just when the caterpillar thought its world was over, it became a butterfly" ~ Michelle Knight
08-28-2015, 10:53 AM #2
Feature article from October 2006:
To many Tennesseans, Cocke County is the place their parents warned them about, the butt of hillbilly jokes, the last redoubt of an old, untamed Appalachia. For decades this poor and dramatically beautiful area, north of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, was a haven for moonshiners and bootleggers who evaded federal tax agents by hiding in its rugged hills and hollows.
It was also known for its brothels and chop shops, its illegal bars and gambling, its shakedowns and drugs and stadium-sized cockfight pits -- and its rampant public corruption. There was a time when people called it "Little Chicago."
And though other mountain communities have seen their wild days lapse into the innocuous category of "colorful past," Cocke County seems doomed to repeat the sins that have long defined it.
Six people have agreed to plead guilty for their roles in an alleged multi-state organized crime ring based in Cocke County that the FBI alleges was protected by corrupt law enforcement officers, federal court records show.
Among those who inked plea deals with federal prosecutors this month are a retired Newport Police Department captain whose two sons have been accused of racketeering, the wife of another retired NPD captain and the daughter of alleged chop shop kingpin Raymond Eddie Hawk...
The Rose Thorn probe was closed last year, but the FBI and other agencies continued pursuing the Hawk Organization as part of an operation dubbed "Tradin' Paint." So far, the investigation has yielded federal indictments against 23 people, roughly half of whom have now either pleaded guilty or agreed to do so.
Operation Rose Thorn started in 2001 and ended in 2008. It led to 48 arrests on federal charges, including the arrests of eight local lawmen with the Newport Police Department or Cocke County Sheriff's Department. Charges ranged from money laundering, theft, conspiracy to distribute cocaine and trafficking stolen goods.
Another 170 people faced charges for cockfighting, gambling and illegal liquor...
"We would talk to the state prosecutors and they all just kept steering us back to look at Cocke County, look at Cocke County. Because in their mind, it was such a bed of corruption that the tentacles went throughout the county and throughout the sheriff's department," Farrow said.
08-28-2015, 12:03 PM #3
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