Donald S. Boyce, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, announced today that David L. Bradford, 33, of East St. Louis, Illinois, formerly of Madison, Illinois, was sentenced on Wednesday, January 11, 2017, for drug and gun trafficking offenses following a jury trial that concluded on August 8, 2016. The jury found Bradford guilty of the following offenses: Count 1 - Conspiracy to Distribute and Possess with Intent to Distribute Controlled Substances (cocaine base and marihuana); Count 3 - Transfer of a Firearm and Ammunition to a Previously Convicted Felon; Counts 5 and 6 – Distribution of Cocaine Base; Count 7 – Possession with Intent to Distribute Marihuana; and Count 8: Unlawful Possession of a Firearm by a Previously Convicted Felon. The terms of imprisonment faced by Bradford were: Counts 1 and 6 - not less than 10 years up to life; Count 3 - up to 10 years; Count 5 – up to 30 years; Count 7 – up to 10 years; and Count 8 – not less than 15 years up to life.
Bradford was sentenced to the following terms of imprisonment: Counts 1, 6, and 8 – 420 months of imprisonment; Counts 3 and 7 – 10 years; Count 5 - 360 months; all terms to run concurrently. There is no parole in the federal system. Bradford must also serve 8 years of supervised release to follow imprisonment. He was ordered to pay a fine of $1,800.00 and a special assessment of $600.00
According to evidence adduced at trial, Bradford was a leader, manager or supervisor of a conspiracy to distribute cocaine base, commonly known as "crack," and marihuana, that operated in St. Clair and Madison Counties from February 2014, to June 9, 2014 (Count 1). During the course of the conspiracy, audio/video recordings established that Bradford distributed crack cocaine on March 4 and April 18, 2014, from his East St. Louis residence (Counts 5 and 6). Also during the course of the conspiracy, marihuana Bradford intended to distribute was found in his bedroom during the execution of a search warrant on June 9, 2014 (Count 7). On June 9, 2014, law enforcement also recovered an SKS 7.62 x 39 m caliber rifle propped against the wall in Bradford’s bedroom, and a Volunteer Enterprises Inc., Model Commando Mark III, .45 caliber rifle and a Mossberg International, 715T .22 LR caliber rifle, both hidden behind a makeshift wall in the basement of the residence (Count 8). All guns had extended magazines and were loaded. Finally, evidence established that Bradford aided and abetted the Transfer of a Romarm Cugir Draco, 7.62x39 mm caliber semi-automatic pistol, and ammunition for the pistol, to himself. More than eight firearms were linked to Bradford during the trial. As a previously convicted felon, Bradford cannot possess firearms.
"ATF will continue to work hand in hand with our law enforcement partners to ensure that Armed Violent Offenders are held accountable for their illicit activities and this particular investigation highlights our commitment to do so", stated ATF Acting, Special Agent in Charge George Lauder.
Information leading to the charges against Beard-Hawkins and Bradford was obtained in an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The case is being handled by Assistant United States Attorney Kit Morrissey.