Marijuana mover sentenced to 10 years

Samuel Gemple, 48
Samuel Gemple

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) A Fort Wayne man brought down in a large-scale federal drug bust in 2016 was sentenced Friday in U.S. District Court in Fort Wayne.

Samuel J. Gemple, 49, of Fort Wayne was sentenced to 10 years in prison followed by 8 years of supervised release after he was convicted of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than 100 kilograms of marijuana. Gemple pleaded guilty to the charge previously.

Gemple was one of 18 people targeted in an investigation that culminated in August 2016 with multiple raids by the FBI and other law enforcement officials. Officials said then that the investigation began in January 2015 and escalated as authorities gained more information into the drug network which involved a geographic region that Fort Wayne, South Bend and Elkhart.

The people allegedly involved in the network moved cocaine, methamphetamine and heroin. Twenty federal search warrants were executed and five court-ordered wiretaps were used as part of the investigation.

During the raids, authorities confiscated 11 kilos of cocaine, with an estimated value of $30,000 to $40,000 per kilo. They also found large amounts of heroin and methamphetamine as well as $600,000 in cash.

According to documents in this case, Gemple delivered large marijuana shipments. Federal prosecutors also said he took in batches of heroin and distributed it to his drug customers.