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Federal judge sentences Norfolk drug trafficker linked to Mexican cartel to 27 years

January 26, 2017  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Federal judge sentences Norfolk drug trafficker linked to Mexican cartel to 27 years

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A federal judge in Virginia sentenced a Norfolk man, accused of being a drug trafficker with direct ties to a Mexican cartel, to 27 years in prison for importing and distributing large quantities of narcotics up and down the eastern seaboard of the United States.

The 27-year-prison sentence of Deric Jevon Twitty disappointed Assistant U.S. Attorneys William Muhr and John Butler, which is on the low end of the 33 years and nine months recommended under current federal guidelines, but pleased Twitty and his attorney.

“He was looking at the possibility of a much, much, much longer sentence,” said Eric Leckie, Twitty’s attorney, after the hearing.

The 37-year-old Norfolk resident pleaded guilty on July 12, 2016, for overseeing an extensive drug trafficking network over a two-year period.

In the indictment, prosecutors alleged from June 2014 through May 2016, Twitty conspired with a Mexican cartel to distribute narcotics in multiple eastern U.S. cities, including the Bronx, New York, Philadelphia, West Palm Beach, Florida, and North Carolina.

Moreover, prosecutors say Twitty worked as a supplier, logistics coordinator, and middleman who managed drug deliveries from California to wholesalers throughout the U.S. and organized couriers to pick up drug packages often delivered to various addresses via Federal Express and delivered the product to street wholesalers.

Additionally, court records revealed that from August 2014 to April 2015, Twitty organized the delivery of 25 pounds of marijuana and 1 kilogram of heroin every seven to 10 days.

He also admitted to overseeing the distribution of methamphetamine on behalf of the Mexican drug cartel.

Twitty was busted by Drug Enforcement Administration agents back in May 2016 with 2.6 kilograms of methamphetamine, heroin, and marijuana, a stolen handgun, a money counter and $18,745 in cash, the Virginian-Pilot reported.

Furthermore, U.S. Attorneys said Twitty organized an elaborate system to funnel the illicit funds back to the Mexican cartel.

According to court documents, the defendant used 22 bank accounts controlled by individuals in the U.S., including California and Arizona, and in Nogales and Matamoros, Mexico, to deposit $292,000 in cash derived from the sale of illegal narcotics.

Records show Twitty has prior drug convictions including a 2004 offense, which landed him a five-year federal prison term.

During sentencing, prosecutors noted Twitty had suspended sentences for three possession-of-cocaine convictions in Chesapeake and Portsmouth circuit courts.

“Surely this emboldened him to carry on his drug activity,” Muhr wrote in court documents, arguing for a sentence of at least 27 years.

However, Leckie pleaded for leniency to the judge and maintained that although his client was a drug trafficker, Twitty’s criminal history “does not include any violent offenses.”

“The defendant has acknowledged that drug-dealing to earn a living is wrong,” Leckie added.

The judge also sentenced Twitty to 10 years of supervised release and ordered the forfeiture of $3.37 million in assets.

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