News and Press Releases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

MONDAY - March 1, 2010

TWENTY-FIRST DEFENDANT SENTENCED IN OPERATION DON QUIXOTE

RALEIGH - United States Attorney George E.B. Holding announced that in federal court on February 25, 2010, United States District Judge Terrence W. Boyle sentenced DEMETRIUS ANTWAUN POWELL, 35, of New Hanover County, North Carolina, to 151 months’ imprisonment followed by three years supervised release.

A Federal Grand Jury returned a Criminal Indictment on August 28, 2009. On November 17, 2009, POWELL pled guilty to possess with the intent to distribute a quantity of heroin.

On June 8, 2009, POWELL was arrested during a traffic stop by the Wilmington Police Department and was found in possession of a quantity of heroin packaged for distribution. POWELL has four prior felony convictions for narcotics offenses.

“This case is a shining example of the progress that can be made in putting drug dealers behind bars when federal, state and local law enforcement and prosecutors work together. The bonds have been forged and we will continue to work together in this very important area of law enforcement,” stated Mr Holding.

This case was brought as a part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) Operation entitled Don Quixote, investigating importers and multi-level distributors of cocaine, crack cocaine, heroin, Ecstasy and gang activity associated with this distribution. This organization is responsible for the importation and distribution of more than 200 kilograms of cocaine, more than 50 kilograms of crack cocaine, 3 kilograms of heroin, 20,000 Ecstacy pills and several kilograms of marijuana into Eastern North Carolina since 2003. To date, 21 people have been sentenced in federal court as a part of this operation.

Investigation of this case is being conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms; the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Safe Streets Task Force (Wilmington); the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigations; the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA); the Wilmington Police Department; the New Hanover Sheriff’s Office; the Onslow County Sheriff’s Office; the Duplin County Sheriff’s Office; the Pender County Sheriff’s Office; the Holly Ridge Police Department, the Top Sail Police Department and the Surf City Police Department. Special Assistant United States Attorney Timothy Severo represented 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 www.usdoj.gov/usao/nce within 48 hours of release.

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