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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Florida

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Two Individuals Indicted On Firearms And Drugs Charges

Tampa, Florida - United States Attorney Robert E. O'Neill announces the return by a grand jury of an indictment charging David P. Lawrence (26, Bradenton) and Mark Alan Finehout (37, Sarasota) each with being a felon in possession of a firearm. Lawrence is also charged with possessing with intent to distribute 5 grams or more of methamphetamine. If convicted of the firearms offense, Finehout faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison. Due to his prior criminal history, Lawrence faces a mandatory minimum of 15 years, up to life imprisonment for the firearms offense. For the narcotics offense, Lawrence faces a mandatory minimum of 10 years in federal prison. The indictment also notifies the individuals that the United States intends to forfeit the firearms and ammunition they are charged with possessing, and any narcotics proceeds related to the charges against Lawrence.

According to the indictment, Lawrence and Finehout, who are both previously convicted felons, are each charged with possessing a .40 caliber Taurus pistol on April 17, 2013. Lawrence is also charged with possessing an SKS rifle on April 18, 2013, and possessing with the intent to distribute 5 grams or more of methamphetamine on April 19, 2013.

An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed a violation of the federal criminal laws, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

This case was jointly investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office, and the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office. It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mark E. Bini.It is another case prosecuted as a part of the Department of Justice’s “Project Safe Neighborhoods” program - a nationwide, gun-violence reduction strategy. United States Attorney Robert E. O’Neill, along with Julie Torres, Special Agent in Charge, ATF, is coordinating the Project Safe Neighborhoods effort here in the Middle District of Florida in cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.

Updated January 26, 2015