A 40-year-old Minnesota man who is alleged to be a prominent figure in the Black P-Stone street gang has been charged with dealing drugs and witness tampering. Both of the counts against him are first-degree felonies. The man was taken into custody on the afternoon of Oct. 10 after prosecutors filed criminal complaints against him in Stearns County District Court.

The man was identified as a Black P-Stone member by officers with the Central Minnesota Violent Offender Task Force. The gang is suspected to be involved in the distribution and sale of what are described as wholesale amounts of methamphetamine and heroin in the St. Cloud area. VOTF officers say that they gathered evidence of the man’s alleged illegal activities on Aug. 17 when a confidential informant purchased about 10.8 grams of heroin from him for $1,000 on Fourth Avenue South. The man is one of more than a dozen individuals police think are involved in the Black P-Stone’s narcotics activities.

The investigation culminated with the execution of several search warrants on Aug. 29. VOTF officers conducted the searches with the assistance of SWAT teams and local law enforcement. One of the properties searched was the man’s residence, according to reports. The evidence recovered was enough to convince a judge to issue a warrant for the man’s arrest on Sept. 18. Reports indicate that he is being held at the Stearns County jail and his bail has been set at $200,000.

Experienced criminal defense attorneys may urge their clients to seriously consider entering into plea discussions when several co-defendants are involved. Prosecutors may be willing to reduce drug charges or penalties significantly to build a strong case against multiple defendants, but their generous offers tend to dry up once they have collected the evidence they need.