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Gov. Tomblin’s brother charged with selling drugs

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s brother illegally sold prescription drugs in Logan County last winter, according to federal prosecutors who announced the charge Wednesday.

Carl Tomblin, 50, of Chapmanville, was charged in federal court with selling oxymorphone, an opioid painkiller often sold under the brand name Opana.

Tomblin was charged in an information, which is similar to an indictment, but generally means the defendant is cooperating with prosecutors.

The information, which has only one sentence of detail, says Tomblin “intentionally distributed” oxymorphone near Chapmanville “on or about Dec. 6, 2013.”

Oxymorphone is a Schedule II drug, meaning that it has a high potential for abuse and can lead to severe dependence, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency. The DEA also classifies cocaine, methamphetamine and oxycodone as Schedule II drugs.

“Carl Tomblin, like many residents of Southern West Virginia, has fallen victim to prescription drug addiction. This illness has resulted in actions that he now accepts responsibility for,” Robert Kuenzel, a Chapmanville attorney representing Tomblin, said in a statement. “He regrets putting his family in this position but looks forward to receiving treatment and making amends for his wrongful conduct.”

Gov. Tomblin’s office released a statement from the governor, who called Wednesday “a very difficult day for me and my family.

“I am saddened by my brother’s actions, and I am disappointed in him — but I love him,” the governor said in the statement. “My brother must be held accountable for his actions. Like everyone dealing with drug addiction, my brother needs help. I’ve said many times that drug addiction can affect any family, and it has affected mine. I thank you for your prayers during this challenging time.”

U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin’s office sent a news release about the charge against Carl Tomblin that did not mention his relationship to the governor, but Goodwin confirmed that he is the governor’s brother when asked by the Gazette…

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