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Press Release

High-Ranking Wilmington Gang Leader Convicted for Drug Trafficking

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of North Carolina

RALEIGH, N.C. – A federal jury convicted a high-ranking Bloods gang leader from Wilmington on charges of trafficking heroin, fentanyl and cocaine.

Don Eugene Nixon, Jr., age 48, was convicted on eight counts, including conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute heroin and fentanyl, distribution of heroin and fentanyl, and possession with the intent to distribute heroin. Nixon faces a minimum term of imprisonment of 5 years and a maximum term of imprisonment of 40 years on each count when sentenced later this year, for a total possible sentence of up to 320 years imprisonment.

“The gangs pushing deadly fentanyl in our community have a role in fueling the deadliest drug epidemic our country has ever seen,” said U.S Attorney Michael Easley.  “Our office is partnering with law enforcement at every level to fight the fentanyl epidemic and put drug traffickers behind bars.” 

According to court records and evidence presented at trial, a months-long investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Wilmington Police Department resulted in six controlled purchases of large quantities of drugs, including heroin and fentanyl, from Nixon. Nixon would deliver the drugs to the informant pressed into a square block shape, tightly wrapped with black electrical tape. In addition, law enforcement executed a search warrant at Nixon’s home and seized 131 grams of heroin and three handguns.

Trial testimony established that Nixon was a large-scale heroin dealer who operated well over a decade in Eastern North Carolina. Additionally, his rank in and reach within the Bloods gang made it difficult to investigate and prosecute his crimes. Witnesses refused to testify due to the threats they faced. Witnesses who did assist in the investigation have had to relocate and are receiving federal protection.

Michael Easley, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina made the announcement after U.S. District Judge James C. Dever III accepted the verdict. The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Wilmington Police Department are investigating the case and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Brad Knott and Jimmie Bellamy are prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release is located on our website. Related court documents and information can be found on the website of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina or on PACER by searching for Case No.7:21-CR-00071.

Updated May 4, 2023