Final defendant pleas in Nederland federal drug trafficking case

Published 12:40 am Wednesday, February 9, 2022

The final defendant pleaded guilty to federal drug trafficking and money laundering charges in a case surrounding a 2020 raid of a Nederland business.

Joseph Daughtery entered his plea Jan. 27, according to court documents.

Daughtry was one of 10 defendants to originally be named in a 27-count indictment.

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READ MORE — Latest guilty pleas, cases dropped in Jake’s Fireworks prosecution.

Charges for Daughtry’s wife, Sandra Daughtry, and Jordan King were dropped, while the remaining defendants entered sealed plea agreements.

Jake Daughtry and Kip Daughtry, who pleaded guilty earlier this year face up to 20 years in prison.

Sentencing will likely come within the next few months.

According to court documents, in 2010, Joseph Daughtry was approached by his son, Jake Daughtry, and his nephew, Jesse Hackett, about owning their own chemical company. Within the next year the three bought an 18-wheeler and discussed the chemicals the company, which they called Right Price Chemicals, would sell.

Despite not originally selling 1,4 Butanediol (BDO) because of the potential for abuse, the three agreed to sell it in 2012 due to the company not being profitable.

According to court papers, Right Price Chemicals made $4.5 million in sales of BDO from 2016-2020. The company allowed people to buy the chemical online or at the Jake’s Fireworks storefront on Twin City Highway.

The government linked the deaths of two people on the East Coast to BDO sold by Right Price Chemicals in 2018.

After a couple years of investigation, federal agents raided Jake’s Fireworks in July 2020, arresting several at the scene.

Last year, the federal government dropped a civil lawsuit against the Daughtrys after the then-Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle Englade presented fabricated evidence to a judge, according to court records. Englade has since retired.

The government agreed to allow the Daughtrys to reopen their businesses under the condition they never sell BDO again.

The attorney for Joseph Daughtry declined to comment on the case prior to the sentencing phase.

Federal court rules state defendants can remain outside of custody until sentencing.