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Archive for Friday, June 21, 1991

LOCAL MAN, 39, PLEADS GUILTY IN STEROIDS CASE

June 21, 1991

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The owner of a local fitness club pleaded guilty this morning in Douglas County District Court to possessing anabolic steroids.

Richard "Junkyard" Sells, owner of Junkyards Jym & Nautilus Center, 535 Gateway Dr., was charged Jan. 3 with a felony count of possessing steroids but pleaded guilty this morning to an amended misdemeanor charge.

District Judge Ralph M. King Jr. accepted the plea and scheduled sentencing for Sept. 6 for Sells, whose 39th birthday is today.

Sells was arrested Jan. 3 after he made a transaction involving anabolic steroids with a confidential informant working for the Kansas Bureau of Investigation. Authorities described the arrest as a "reverse bust," in which the suspect purchases or obtains illegal drugs from a law enforcement agent or informant. In a normal bust, it's the suspect who sells or distributes drugs.

Authorities said that Sells planned to distribute the steroids he obtained in the Jan. 3 transaction.

The charge to which Sells pleaded guilty is a Class A misdemeanor and carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail and a $2,500 fine.

As part of a plea bargain, Sells agreed to cooperate fully with local, state and federal drug enforcement authorities and to testify, if needed, in any federal or state court proceeding. He also agreed not to contest the forfeiture of his pickup truck, which was seized by authorities during the arrest.

Sells was the first person in Douglas County to be arrested on steroid-related charges. Steroids are performance-enhancing compounds sometimes used by athletes.

Sells, a weighlifter who has competed in numerous bodybuilding contests, opened his gym in 1984.

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