Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Final Defendant Sentenced to Imprisonment for Participation in Large-Scale Lafayette Drug Trafficking Organization

Thirteen Sentences Total 120 Years

LAFAYETTE, LA—United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley announced today that the final defendant, Amelia Victor, has been sentenced in United States v. Martin Victor, Jr., et al. This federal drug prosecution involved 13 defendants indicted in a multi-count conspiracy charged with distribution of cocaine and cocaine base, or “crack,” within Lafayette, Louisiana. All 13 defendants pled guilty to drug trafficking charges, and sentences were handed down by U.S. District Judge Rebecca F. Doherty in federal court in Lafayette, Louisiana.

This investigation focused on drug activity within the Truman neighborhood area of Lafayette. The indictment was the result of a lengthy investigation conducted jointly by federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies and resulted in the dismantling of an organized drug trafficking conspiracy and the arrests and prosecution of its members. All 13 defendants were arrested in 2009, pled guilty, and were sentenced during prosecution of the case from 2010 to September 18, 2012. Several significant terms of imprisonment were imposed on the conspiracy’s upper-level members, and the combined sentences in the case total more than 120 years of incarceration. There is no parole in the federal system.

The leader of the organization, Martin Victor, Jr., and his co-conspirators purchased large amounts of cocaine powder from known suppliers, who had the cocaine transported to Lafayette from Houston, Texas, and elsewhere. After acquiring cocaine powder and manufacturing cocaine base or “crack,” Martin Victor, Jr. and his co-conspirators would supply members of the conspiracy with the cocaine base for further distribution at various locations within the Lafayette area. Over $50,000 in U.S. currency, identified as drug proceeds, has been seized and forfeited, as well as a firearm, vehicles, bank deposits, and other assets. Many of the upper-level members of the conspiracy were sentenced as career offenders under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, and eight of the 13 defendants had one or more prior convictions for drug trafficking offenses.

United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley stated, “This investigation revealed an organized drug trafficking network whose primary interest was distribution of cocaine and cocaine base (“crack”). Members of this criminal organization were involved in an illegal scheme to manufacture and distribute multiple kilos of cocaine and cocaine base (“crack”) into the Lafayette area. These sentences should send a strong message that there is a serious price to pay if you choose to make a career out of drug trafficking.”

This case was investigated by the FBI South Central Louisiana Safe Streets Gang Task Force which is comprised of agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) - Lafayette Resident Agency, Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s Office, Lafayette Police Department, Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Office, St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office, and St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office. Additional assistance was provided by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Lafayette Metro Narcotics Unit, Lafayette Police Department Action Unit, and the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s Department Star Team.

The case was prosecuted by United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley and Assistant United States Attorney Myers P. Namie.

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