An Ohio man has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for leading a drug conspiracy that distributed at least 40,000 pain pills in the Hazard area.
The drug ring headed by Jay A. Shephard, 46, did incalculable damage in Eastern Kentucky, a federal prosecutor said in a court motion.
"The scope and breadth of the offense conducted in this case is phenomenal," Assistant U.S. Attorney Roger West said.
U.S. District Judge David Bunning sentenced Shephard late Thursday in Covington, according to a news release.
He was the last of 21 people convicted in a large drug conspiracy that sold pills in several places in Kentucky and West Virginia, according to the release.
The organization got pills in Michigan and sold them in Perry, Breathitt, Fayette and Scott counties from May 2006 to May 2009, according to the news release and a court motion.
Shephard maintained his innocence and said a key witness lied, but a jury convicted him last year of conspiring to distribute drugs and of money laundering.
He was able to buy several pieces of property with drug proceeds, according to a motion.
The judgment against him includes forfeiture of $83,000 in cash and five properties in Dayton, where he had a home, and a monetary judgment of $225,000.
Shephard was on supervised release after serving a lengthy sentence in a previous drug case when he was arrested.