POMEROY — A Meigs County man who convicted last week on numerous drug and other charges, received the maximum prison sentence Tuesday for his crimes.
Jacques Georges Daboni received the maximum sentence of up to 32 years in prison by Judge I. Carson Crow after he was found guilty last week in Meigs County Common Pleas Court of 12 counts of trafficking in heroin, engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and possession of drugs.
According to Meigs County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Jeremy Fisher, Daboni moved into the area solely for the purpose of trafficking in heroine. Fisher asked the court for the maximum on each count to “send a message” to others that trafficking heroin in Meigs County would not be tolerated.
Defense Attorney Jason Holdren outlined reasons Daboni, who he said maintained his innocence, should not be given the maximum sentence. Holdren argued his client did not have any prior felony convictions and was the father of three children. He asked Daboni be considered on his own history, instead of sentencing being about “sending a message.”
Judge Crow asked Daboni on two occasions if he would like to address the court or to say something on his behalf.
“No sir, thank you, judge,” were Daboni’s answers each time.
Crow handed down the maximum sentence on each count before a quiet courtroom, citing the Ohio Revised Code for his sentencing decisions on the numerous counts.
With the same demeanor seen during the verdict, Daboni did not alter his expression and sat motionless as Crow handed down the sentence on each of the 12 counts.
After sentencing, Meigs County Prosecuting Attorney Colleen Williams expressed thanks to all law enforcement involved in the case. She said heroin is a nationwide problem and law enforcement in Meigs County is working to wipe out heroin trafficking from the area.
The level of heroin being sold in Meigs County became apparent during the trial as witnesses and law enforcement took the stand. According statements made by Fisher to Crow before sentencing, Amber Duffy and Chad Diddle allegedly sold heroin in excess of $250,000 while they were working for Daboni. The couple were each paid a half gram of heroin a day in exchange for selling heroin the Racine area in 2014.
Sheriff Keith Wood offered his thoughts on the outcome of the trial and said his office continues to fight the drug problem.
“We continue to battle drugs in the county and the voice of the jury was clear,” Wood said. “Our office continues to fight the drug problem and the work of the Major Crimes Task Force of Meigs and Gallia Counties continues.”
The Meigs County Sheriff’s Office, Gallia County Sheriff’s Office, Middleport Police Department and the Gallipolis Police Department make up the task force and work together in efforts to extinguish the drug problem. Wood said the work of the task force is outstanding.
Daboni faced numerous charges on various dates that were merged for the trial. He was sentenced to the following: Case 14-CR-173: three felony counts of trafficking heroin in the fifth degree, 12 months each count; one felony count in the first degree of possession of drugs, eight years; one felony count in the first degree engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, 11 years.
Case 14-CR-232: Two felony counts in the fourth degree of trafficking in heroin, 12 months each count; two felony counts of trafficking heroin in the fifth degree, 12 months each count; and one felony count trafficking heroin in the second degree, eight years.
Case 15-CR-23: One felony count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, (charge was merged with one in 14-31-232 for sentencing).
The sentences are to be served consecutively for a total of 32 years incarceration, after which is will be subject to five years community control upon release.
The trial had been laden with delays that included the firing of several attorneys and a mistrial due to an injury which allegedly occurred while he was in police custody, keeping the 2014 case from being heard until last week.
Contact Lorna Hart at 740-992-2155 Ext. 2551.