United States Attorney Anne M. Tompkins
Western District of North Carolina
DRUG TRAFFICKER SENTENCED TO SERVE 240 MONTHS IN FEDERAL PRISON Defendant Receives A Mandatory 20 Year Minimum Sentence Due To Prior Felony Drug Conviction CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Ronnie Lee Neely, 34, of York, S.C., was sentenced today in Charlotte by Chief U.S. District Judge Robert J. Conrad, Jr. to serve 240 months in prison, to be followed by 10 years of supervised release for cocaine and crack cocaine trafficking charges, announced Anne M. Tompkins, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina.
U.S. Attorney Tompkins is joined in making today’s announcement by Brock D. Nicholson, Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)/Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) overseeing the Carolinas, Chief Rodney Monroe of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD), and Sheriff Bruce M. Bryant of the York County Sheriff’s Office. On October 20, 2010, a trial jury in Charlotte convicted Neely for conspiring to distribute and possession with intent to distribute at least 5 kilograms of cocaine and at least 50 grams of crack cocaine from 2004 to October 2009, and attempting to possess at least 500 grams of cocaine on June 1, 2009. According to trial testimony, court proceedings and official court documents, Neely was connected to a seizure in May 2009 of 13 kilograms of cocaine in Charlotte. When law enforcement officers arrested Neely in June 2010, they also seized from his home 20 grams of crack cocaine and 110 grams of powder cocaine, $11,430 in cash, more than 2.5 pounds of marijuana, and a hydraulic press used for distributing bulk amounts of drugs. Evidence presented at trial also included testimony from other co-conspirators about a 2004 incident in which law enforcement searched Neely’s home and found a half an ounce of crack cocaine, 10 pills of MDMA, also known as “Ecstasy,” a set of digital scales used for weighing drugs and $4,800 in cash.
Neely’s co-defendant, Dwayne Andrew Renwrick, also of York, had previously pleaded guilty to conspiring to possess with intent to distribute at least 5 kilograms of cocaine and was sentenced by Judge Conrad in March 2011 to serve 30 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release. Neely and Renwrick have been in local federal custody since they were arrested in June 2010. Upon designation of a federal facility, they will be transferred into custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Federal sentences are served without the possibility of parole.
The case was handled by HSI Agents, CMPD Task Force Officers assigned to the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force, as well as Deputies of the York County Sheriff’s Office. The prosecution for the government was handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven R. Kaufman of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Charlotte.