Two West Plains men sentenced to more than 10 years each for distributing methamphetamine

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Two men from the West Plains were convicted by the federal government on Friday for their involvement in the distribution of methamphetamine in several counties in the Ozarks.

According to a press release from Acting United States Attorney Teresa Moore, Benny Griffin, 59, and Jordan Gutierrez, 26, were convicted separately in federal court. Judge Stephen Bough sentenced Griffin to 15 years in prison without parole and Gutierrez to 12 years and six months in prison without parole.

In March, the two men pleaded guilty to participating in a conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine in Howell, Greene and Texas counties from December 31, 2015 to June 21, 2019.

According to a press release, in 2018, officers raided Griffin’s home. Officers found 1.947 grams of pure methamphetamine in his pocket. While searching his property, they found more methamphetamine, bags of marijuana, surveillance equipment and $ 16,098.

Griffin told police he had obtained the methamphetamine days earlier from Fontella Noose, 40. Griffin and Noose got the meth from Oklahoma, and Griffin provided all the money for the meth. He told police Noose owed him $ 9,000 for her book and another book that she kept from a previous transaction.

Noose pleaded guilty to her involvement in March and was sentenced to 20 years.

Authorities arrested Gutierrez in 2018 on his way back from Oklahoma and was arrested at a truck stop in Cabool. Gutierrez had 70.63 grams of methamphetamine with him. Gutierrez told police he obtained the meth from Shirley Hicks, 63, of West Plains.

To learn more about Hicks’ involvement in this case, click here.

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