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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, November 10, 2016

Houma Postal Worker Pleads Guilty to Bribery and Houma Man Pleads Guilty to Drug Distribution

U.S. Attorney Kenneth Allen Polite, Jr., announced that on Tuesday, EBONIE SMITH, age 37, of Houma, pled guilty to one counts of bribery of a public official, and DARNOLD DEVILLE, age 50, of Houma, pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute and to possess with the intent to distribute 500 grams or more of a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine. 

According to court documents, in January 2015, DEA agents began investigating a drug-trafficking organization based in Terrebonne Parish that obtained methamphetamine through sources of supply in Texas and in California, including through the mail.  Upon his arrest on December 10, 2015, DEVILLE was in possession of 84 grams of methamphetamine and a digital scale.  Between August and October 2015, SMITH, in exchange for cash payments, used her employment with the United States Postal Service to facilitate the shipment and delivery of parcels, which contained methamphetamine, to other members of the same conspiracy in Terrebonne Parish. 

DEVILLE, who was charged by Bill of Information with a prior conviction for a felony drug offense, faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years in prison, a maximum sentence of life in prison, at least 10 years of supervised release after the term of imprisonment, a fine of up to $20,000,000, and a mandatory special assessment of $100.  SMITH faces a sentence of up to 15 years in prison, up to 3 years of supervised release after the term of imprisonment, a fine of up to $250,000, and a mandatory special assessment of $100.  U.S. District Court Judge Jay C. Zainey will sentence both DEVILLE and SMITH on February 7, 2017. 

U.S. Attorney Polite praised the work of the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office in investigating this matter.  Assistant United States Attorneys Nicholas D. Moses, James S. C. Baehr, and André Jones are in charge of the prosecution.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Updated November 10, 2016