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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, April 12, 2018

New Orleans Man Pleads Guilty to Drug Conspiracy and Firearms Offenses

U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans announced that JUSTIN CRAFT, age 29, of New Orleans, pled guilty to several drug and firearms charges, including conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute one hundred grams or more of heroin and possessing firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

According to court documents, In March of 2017, members of the NOPD/HIDTA Task Force received information from a source of information that three individuals, including CRAFT, were heroin distributors in the area of Mandeville Street and Derbigny Street in New Orleans. 

On April 11, 2017, officers conducted surveillance of the individuals and observed CRAFT conduct a hand-to-hand narcotics transaction with an individual.  Officers arrested the individual and seized cocaine base that he purchased from CRAFT.  A second individual who was also arrested after purchasing heroin in the area, informed officers that he called one telephone that was shared by CRAFT and two other persons.  According to the individual, any one of the three would answer the phone and sell him an ounce of heroin on a weekly basis.

Officers and DEA Special Agents obtained a search warrant for CRAFT’S residence at 14070 Wales Street in New Orleans.  During the search, officers and agents seized 4.9 grams of heroin and several firearms, including two semi-automatic rifles, a semi-automatic pistol, and a shotgun.

CRAFT faces a minimum term of fifteen years’ imprisonment and a maximum of life imprisonment.  U.S. District Judge Carl J. Barbier set sentencing for June 28, 2018.

U.S. Attorney Evans praised the work of the Drug Enforcement Administration, the New Orleans Police Department, and the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office in investigating this matter.  Assistant United States Attorney André Jones is in charge of the prosecution.

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Updated April 12, 2018