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LEXINGTON, KY - A Lexington man, who used proceeds from trafficking cocaine to purchase houses and vehicles, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for multiple federal offenses.
Chief U.S. District Judge Karen C. Caldwell sentenced 35-year-old Marquis Deron Heard on Thursday for distribution of cocaine, possession of a weapon by a convicted felon, and 29 counts of money laundering.
Heard was found guilty by a jury of the charges earlier this year. The evidence at trial established that, between 2008 and 2011, Heard was involved in trafficking large quantities of cocaine, from a Mexican source, into Lexington for distribution. The testimony at trial revealed that Heard had distributed at least 45 kilograms of cocaine.
Evidence at trial showed that Heard reinvested the proceeds of the drug transactions into the purchase of multiple vehicles and residences in both Lexington and Louisville. Heard was also found in possession of firearms at the time of his arrest. The jury convicted Heard in January of 2013 after four days of trial.
Under federal law, Heard must serve at least 85 percent of his prison sentence, and, upon release, will be under the supervision of the U.S. Probation Office for 10 years.
Kerry B. Harvey, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky, Robert L. Corso, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration and Christopher A. Henry, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division, jointly made the announcement today.
The investigation was conducted by the Lexington Police Department, the DEA, and the IRS. The U.S. Attorney’s Office was represented in the case by Assistant U.S. Attorney J. Hamilton Thompson.