FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
FRIDAY - January 23, 2009
FEDERALLY FORFEITED FUNDS DISTRIBUTED
WILMINGTON - United States Attorney George E.B. Holding announced today the transfer of over $325,000 in federally forfeited funds to the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office, and Leland Police Department. Each agency will receive approximately one-third of the proceeds, or $84,000.
The funds were paid pursuant to the federal equitable sharing program, a program under which local and state law enforcement agencies are allowed to share in up to 80% of the proceeds of successful federal forfeitures under the Controlled Substances Act. Shares must reflect their percentage contribution to the investigation that led to the seizure.
The money shared represents the proceeds of the sale of the real property on which the Town and Country Motel, 105 Main Street, Belville, North Carolina was previously located. The motel was owned by Albert Sidney Boney, who plead guilty and was convicted in state court on February 4, 2008 of trafficking cocaine and is currently serving a sentence of three and one-half (3 ½) years. The evidence in the case demonstrated that Boney utilized the motel and surrounding property as a haven for drug dealing and prostitution. Boney settled the civil forfeiture case with the federal government on October 9, 2007, giving up the tract of the property on which the motel was located and also forfeiting $107,325.00 in seized drug proceeds, of which approximately $338,115.00 has already been paid to the cooperating agencies.
United State Attorney George Holding said: “This case is a prime example of the benefits of federal, state, and local cooperation in law enforcement. Sid Boney and his criminal associates were a blight on the community. With his removal, citizens can feel safer and the community can develop in a more wholesome, productive way. It is fitting that the proceeds of sale of the property used to facilitate the criminal activity are now in the hands of state and local law enforcement agencies, allowing them to accomplish even more in their service to their communities.”
In receiving the check, Brunswick County Sheriff John Ingram stated: “Sid Boney was a parasite on the community. That parasite has been removed. This case has raised the bar and set the example that when law enforcement agencies work together, the criminal elements can be removed from their communities. The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank all the other law enforcement agencies involved in this case, as this would not have been possible without their help. I am committed to continuing to strengthen relationships between law enforcement agencies. I also thank the citizens of Brunswick County for their assistance in this case.”
Rodney G. Benson, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Atlanta Field Division stated, “DEA places the highest priority of not only removing dangerous drugs from the street, but also on seizing the ill-gotten gains of illegal drug trafficking. DEA's intent clearly is to put drug traffickers out of business by using every available resource. The success in this equitable sharing program would not be possible without the high level of cooperation between our law enforcement counterparts.”
SBI Director Robin Pendergraft stated, “This investigation illustrates the value of partnerships among law enforcement agencies, which the SBI will continue to foster in Brunswick County and across North Carolina.”
Investigation of the case was conducted by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office, and Leland Police Department, with the assistance of the Drug Enforcement Administration and the United States Marshal’s Service. Assistant United States Attorney Steve West served as prosecutor for the civil forfeiture case, while Assistant District Attorney Chris Thomas prosecuted the state criminal case.
News releases are available on the U. S. Attorney’s web page at www.usdoj.gov/usao/nce within 48 hours of release.