News and Press Releases


WEDNESDAY - October 22, 2008


ELIZABETH CITY - United States Attorney George E.B. Holding announced that in federal court yesterday United States District Judge Terrence W. Boyle sentenced JOE LEE GORHAM, 37, of Halifax, North Carolina, to 120 months’ imprisonment.

A Federal Grand Jury returned a Criminal Indictment on June 4, 2008. On August 4, 2008, GORHAM pled guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute 50 or more grams of cocaine base (crack). On December 17, 2006, Halifax County Sheriff’s deputies conducted a traffic stop of a vehicle driven by GORHAM as it was conspicuously parked with another vehicle on a side road in Weldon, North Carolina. Deputies found on GORHAM 18.8 grams of cocaine base and 4.5 ounces of cocaine base in a bag in bushes close to where GORHAM’s vehicle was parked. On March 24, 2008 and April 9, 2008, after an investigation was begun following the aforementioned traffic stop, controlled purchases were arranged in which GORHAM sold 14.3 grams and 56.7 grams, respectively, of crack cocaine.

Mr. Holding commented, “This case is another reminder of how pervasive drug trafficking is in all of our communities. Here, in the relatively small community of Weldon, investigators who were vigilant and thorough, brought the drug trafficking activities of Joe Gorham to an end. Judge Boyle’s sentence has done what the prosecutions in state court did not do.”

GORHAM has an extensive drug trafficking criminal history which includes possession of cocaine, three convictions of possession with intent to sell and deliver cocaine, sale and delivery of cocaine, and sell of cocaine.

Investigation of the case was conducted by the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Joshua Royster served as prosecutor for the government.


News releases are available on the U. S. Attorney’s web page at within 48 hours of release.

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