Sentences issued in family-operated East Texas drug ring

Sentences issued in family-operated East Texas drug ring

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - A mother and son who operated a synthetic drug conspiracy out of Tyler and Plano learned their sentence today.

Sharjeel Jeff Ali,29, and his mother Nadia Farishta,54, pleaded guilty in June to conspiracy to distribute and possess controlled substances, and engaging in monetary transaction, all federal charges.

'Operation Bowl of Ashes,' a crackdown on synthetic drugs, has been in the works for several months.

"The final two of 5 indicted defendants were sentenced to terms of imprisonment," said Mary Ann Cozby with the United States Attorney's Office of the Eastern District of Texas.

It was announced that Ali was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison, and Farishta sentenced to 47 months.
The son and mother plead guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute control substance, and engaging in monetary transaction, but this operation was a family affair.

Related: Texas mother, son sentenced for role in family-operated East Texas drug ring
"This case stemmed for a 2016 investigation of a the retail sale of synthetic drugs," said Cozby,

 Earlier this year, Farishta's ex-husband Saleem Jiwani, her daughter Nimrose Khan, and son-in-law Adeel Khan, were also sentenced with similar charges.
In August of 2016, the family members were indicted by a federal grand jury.

Authorities said synthetic drugs were distributed from Ashes Smoke Shop in Downtown Plano and at the Minute Stop in Tyler.
The synthetic drug were sold under the names like 'Brain Freeze,' and 'Dead Man Walking.'
Authorities say people who bought and tried the fake drugs tipped them off.

"They would talk about how they had no idea how bad the drug was, thinking it was like marijuana and boy, were they wrong," said Sgt. Courtney Pero with the Plano Police Department.

 Authorities said they are getting closer towards eliminating synthetic drugs in East Texas, thanks in part to community support.
"We can only see so much, and develop so many tips and sources. The people that are in the community everyday see that stuff," said Pero.

The defendants will forfeit more than $250,000.

The federal government will also get $500,000 worth of fines.

Copyright 2017 KLTV. All rights reserved.