News and Press Releases


TUESDAY - March 3, 2009


WILMINGTON - United States Attorney George E.B. Holding announced that in federal court on February 13, 2009, Senior United States District Judge James C. Fox sentenced LAURA SUE JONES, of Duplin County, North Carolina, to 60 months imprisonment followed by five years supervised release.

In September, 2007, and again in January, 2008, the Duplin County Sheriff’s Office executed search warrants at JONES’ residence in Wallace, North Carolina. During both searches, detectives found quantities of methamphetamine. In March, 2008, the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation obtained and executed a search warrant for JONES’ residence. During the search, approximately 41 grams of methamphetamine and a handgun were found. JONES was subsequently arrested, after the search of the residence. On November 10, 2008, JONES pleaded guilty to a Criminal Information charging her with conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute more than 50 grams or more of a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine.

This case was brought as part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) Operation entitled Fire Ants, investigating multi-level dealers and importers of Mexican-made methamphetamine in and around Duplin and Jones Counties.

Mr. Holding commented: “While we’ve seen a transformation in the methamphetamine supply system in the last few years – a change from locally made meth to that supplied by South and Central American organizations – meth trafficking and use continues to be a significant problems in our communities. Thus, this case is the result of an important state and federal cooperative effort to address this issue.”

Investigation of the case was conducted by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, Duplin County Sheriff’s Office, Beaulaville Police Department, and Drug Enforcement Administration - Wilmington. Special Assistant United States Attorney Timothy Severo and Assistant United States Attorney Brian S. Meyers served as prosecutors for the government. Mr. Severo is a prosecutor with the New Hanover District Attorney’s Office. District Attorney Ben David has assigned him to the United States Attorney’s Office to prosecute federal Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force criminal matters. This has been made possible by a grant funded by the Governor’s Crime Commission and the New Hanover County Commissioners.


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

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