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Press Release

Arizona Man Pleads Guilty to Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Stopped by law enforcement after driving 33 miles over speed limit

A man who possessed methamphetamine with the intent to distribute it pled guilty today in federal court in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

John Trinidad Qualls, age 42, from Tucson, Arizona, was convicted of possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of actual (pure) methamphetamine and 500 grams or more of a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine. 

In a plea agreement, Qualls admitted that, on December 31, 2022, law enforcement traffic-stopped him for speeding.  Qualls handed an officer a black pouch, which contained his license, insurance, and registration.  There was marijuana residue inside the pouch, and both the pouch and documents smelled of marijuana.  Qualls admitted that he had used marijuana earlier that day.  Law enforcement searched the car and found 1,200.10 grams of actual (pure) methamphetamine. 

Sentencing before United States District Court Judge C.J. Williams will be set after a presentence report is prepared.  Qualls remains in custody of the United States Marshal.  Qualls faces a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years’ imprisonment and the following maximum penalties: (1) not more than life imprisonment without the possibility of parole; (2) a fine of not more than $10,000,000; (3) a mandatory special assessment of $100; and (4) a term of supervised release of at least 5 years and up to a term of life.

The case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Devra T. Hake and was investigated by the Floyd County Sheriff’s Office. 

Court file information at

The case file number is 23-CR-2021.  Follow us on Twitter @USAO_NDIA.

Updated September 22, 2023

Drug Trafficking