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Press Release

Man that Possessed Unregistered Firearm Sent to Prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Possessed Gun While Being a Drug User

A Kentucky man who possessed an unregistered firearm was sentenced February 17, 2022, to more than three years in federal prison.

James Manuel Lowe, age 51, from Ashland, Kentucky, received the prison term after an August 25, 2021 guilty plea to possession of an unregistered firearm.

At the guilty plea, Lowe admitted possessing a weapon that was made from a shotgun that had an overall length of less than 26 inches and a barrel or barrels of less than 18 inches in length while in Iowa.  Lowe had not registered this firearm. Lowe also has convictions for larceny, forgery, wrongful destruction, unlawful possession of prescription drugs, eluding, possession of methamphetamine, burglary, theft, and possession of drug paraphernalia.  The court found Lowe was a drug user at the time he possessed the firearm.

Lowe was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Judge C.J. Williams.  Lowe was sentenced to 37 months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a 3-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN).  PSN is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime.  Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.  As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

Lowe is being held in the United States Marshal’s custody until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Emily K. Nydle and investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; the Iowa Department of Criminal Investigations; the Iowa County Sheriff’s Office; the Mahaska County Sheriff’s Office; and the Poweshiek County Sheriff’s Office.

Court file information at

The case file number is 21-cr-00044.

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Updated February 18, 2022

Drug Trafficking