Trinh Kapu and Six other people indicted for operating narcotics market from Savannah seafood restaurant

(STL.News) – The owner of a seafood restaurant, three family members and three others have been charged in a drug trafficking conspiracy that alleges the store was used as a front for the sale of marijuana and THC vaping pens.

The indictments, unsealed this week, allege The Original Nancy’s Seafood, at 2211 Skidaway Road, Savannah, was used to take in large quantities of marijuana and THC oil for repackaging and sale, said Bobby L. Christine, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia.

“Savannah is a wonderful city for seafood,” said U.S. Attorney Christine.  “It shouldn’t be a marketplace for illegal drugs.”

The investigation began in August 2019, when law enforcement agencies tracked the source of marijuana being sold in Bulloch County to Savannah.  Those named in the four-count indictment include:

Trinh Kapu, 46, of Savannah, owner of The Original Nancy’s Seafood; Ikaika Kapu, 28, of Savannah; Micah Kapu, 21, of Savannah; Matthew Dulin, 36, of Savannah; and Paul Gonning II, 23, of Savannah, all charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana, Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime, Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premises, and Money Laundering Conspiracy.

In addition, Tran Nguyen, 44, of Roseville, Calif., is charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana, Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premises, and Money Laundering Conspiracy; and Chandler McMillian, 20, of Metter, is charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana.

The charges carry penalties of up to 20 years in federal prison, with an additional sentence of up to five years for the firearms charge.

Criminal indictments contain only charges; defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Robert J. Murphy, the Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Atlanta Field Division said, “These indictments should serve as a clear reminder to business operators who facilitate drug trafficking and money laundering schemes: While you think your criminal acts are going unnoticed, they are not.  DEA, its law enforcement counterparts and the U.S. Attorney’s Office are watching; it’s just a matter of time before you are caught and brought to justice.”

“Unfortunately, drugs cross boundaries.  In this case, they were being sold out of an establishment that was meant to be a safe place for patrons,” said Everett Ragan, Director of the Chatham-Savannah Counter Narcotics Team (CNT).  “We must remain vigilant when it comes to illegal activity and do our part to ensure our establishments are safe for visitors and not a danger.”

The case is being investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Chatham-Savannah County Counter-Narcotics Team and the Bulloch County Sheriff’s Office, and prosecuted for the United States by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Frank M. Pennington II and Joshua Bearden, in coordination with the Asset Recovery Unit.

List of indicted defendants and charges

  • Trinh Kapu, 46, of Savannah, owner of The Original Nancy’s Seafood, is charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana, Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime, Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premises, and Money Laundering Conspiracy
  • Ikaika Kapu, 28, of Savannah, is charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana, Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime, Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premises, and Money Laundering Conspiracy
  • Micah Kapu, 21, of Savannah, is charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana, Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime, Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premises, and Money Laundering Conspiracy
  • Matthew Dulin, 36, of Savannah, is charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana, Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime, Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premises, and Money Laundering Conspiracy
  • Paul Gonning II, 23, of Savannah, is charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana, Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime, Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premises, and Money Laundering Conspiracy
  • Tranh Nguyen, 44, of Roseville, Calif., is charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana, Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premises, and Money Laundering Conspiracy; and,
  • Chandler McMillian, 20, of Metter, is charged with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Marijuana

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