LONDON, Ky. - Trial began Feb. 25 in U.S. District Court for three defendants accused of being involved with what authorities say was an interstate motorcycle theft and money-laundering operation.
Defendants Mark Justice, 52, Richard “Dickie” Meade, 64, and George Ferguson, 53, are all from Ashland.
Ten defendants were originally charged in the case. Six others have either pleaded guilty or indicated their intention to do so, according to the Ashland Daily Independent. Three defendants who pled guilty are scheduled for sentencing June 6.
According to court records, several defendants agreed to transfer the titles of motorcycles stolen from biker events in various states, including Florida, South Carolina and South Dakota. Fields acted as a mechanic for the group, as well as an agent for TCB Customs, Chapman’s company, and also signed vehicle transaction documents from TCB Customs to “innocent purchasers.”
Chapman, Fields and others would remove parts displaying vehicle identification numbers, including frames, forks, engines and transmission cases, and replace them with aftermarket parts with new numbers, records state. The bikes would then be registered in other states, including Kentucky and West Virginia, as kit bikes to conceal the fact they were stolen.
The trial could last several weeks, prosecutors say.
Posted by Holly Wagner