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Drug charges dismissed in county court against two Bemidji men; federal indictment stands

BEMIDJI -- Cases were transferred to federal court for two of four people from Bemidji arrested for methamphetamine trafficking in June.

Raymond Jesse Nibbe Jr, 57, was charged with two counts of felony first-degree drug sale. Philip Eugene Gurzi, 55, was charged with three counts of felony first-degree drug sale. Beltrami County Court prosecution dismissed charges against Nibbe and Gurzi on Aug. 5. According to court documents, the charges were dismissed because the defendants were indicted on federal drug charges for the same behavioral incidents in U.S. District Court.

Nibbe and Gurzi were arrested along with Tamara Sue Halverson 44 and Shawn Elston Jackson, 46, after Paul Bunyan Drug Task Force narcotics agents conducted several search warrants and seized a large amount of cash, vehicles and other evidence in Puposky. The evidence was reportedly associated with a criminal enterprise established in the Bemidji area involving several other states and large quantities of methamphetamine sold in Northwest Minnesota.

Jackson is charged with two counts of felony first-degree drug sale. Halverson is charged with one count of felony first-degree drug sale.

First-degree drug sale carries a maximum penalty of 30 years imprisonment and a $1,000,000 fine. Jackson and Halverson are being held in the Beltrami County Jail. A federal court trial date for Nibbe and Gurzi has been set for Oct. 20.

Crystal Dey
Crystal Dey covers crime, courts, tribal relations and social issues for The Bemidji Pioneer in Bemidji, Minnesota. Originally from Minnesota’s Iron Range, Dey has worked for the Echo Press in Alexandria, Minnesota, The Forum in Fargo, North Dakota, The Tampa Tribune in Tampa, Florida, the Hartford Courant in Hartford and West Hartford News in West Hartford, Connecticut. Dey studied Mass Communications at Minnesota State University Moorhead with an emphasis in Online Journalism. Follow Crystal Dey on Twitter @Crystal_Dey.
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