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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Kentucky

Friday, April 12, 2019

Estill County Man Sentenced to 240 Months for Armed Fentanyl Trafficking

LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kevin Scott Abney, 40, of Irvine, Kentucky, was sentenced Friday, to 240 months in federal prison, by United States District Judge Danny C. Reeves, for possession with intent to distribute fentanyl, possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. 

In June 2018, officers with the Berea Police Department arrested Abney at a business in Berea, Kentucky.  During the arrest, officers located 15 grams of fentanyl and two firearms.  During his guilty plea, Abney admitted to possessing of the fentanyl and firearms. Abney has seven prior felony convictions, including four crimes of violence, which qualified him as an Armed Career Criminal.             

Under federal law, Abney must serve 85 percent of his prison sentence; and upon his release, he will be under the supervision of the United States Probation Office for 5 years.

“The defendant’s lengthy criminal history, coupled with his intent to distribute the deadly drug fentanyl while armed, led to his twenty-year sentence,” stated United States Attorney Robert M. Duncan, Jr.   “This sentence should send a message:  armed drug trafficking has serious consequences and our Office will continue to make prosecution of these cases a core priority.  Because of the good work of law enforcement, an armed, dangerous, and repeat offender has been held accountable for his criminal conduct, and our community is safer.”

“ATF is committed to reducing gun violence in our neighborhoods by arresting violent offenders who unlawfully possess firearms,” stated ATF Special Agent in Charge Stuart Lowrey of the Louisville Field Division. “Today’s sentencing of an armed career criminal, is the result of an ongoing commitment by ATF to work with our law enforcement partners to make our communities safer for everyone.”

Robert M. Duncan, Jr., United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky; Stuart Lowrey, Special Agent in Charge of the ATF Louisville Field Division; and David Gregory, Chief of the Berea Police Department, jointly made the announcement.

The ATF and the Berea Police Department conducted the investigation.  The United States was represented by Assistant United States Attorney Cynthia T. Rieker.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The PSN program was reinvigorated as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Updated April 12, 2019