Jury Convicts New Jersey Man of Essex County Drug Conspiracy
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York
James Kerns Found Guilty of Cocaine and Crack Cocaine Charges
ALBANY, NEW YORK - James Kerns, age 30, of Elizabethtown, New Jersey, was convicted on June 30, 2020, following a four-day jury trial of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine, and possession with intent to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine, announced Acting United States Attorney Antoinette T. Bacon and Ray Donovan, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), New York Division.
The trial evidence showed that on November 2, 2020, Kerns conspired with co-defendant Ibn Spivey and others to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine from a local residence in Westport, New York, in Essex County. It was established during trial that on November 2, 2020, Kerns and Spivey travelled from New Jersey to a residence in Westport and began to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine. On November 3, 2020, DEA Special Agents executed a search warrant at this location where they found Kerns sitting across from a large brick of cocaine and drug packaging materials along with a large knife and a video surveillance monitor. Beside Kerns was a lunchbox filled with crack cocaine and powder cocaine. DEA Special Agents found Spivey sitting across from Kerns, with a bag of crack tucked in his (Spivey’s) trousers. Both Spivey and Kerns were arrested.
Sentencing is scheduled for November 4, 2021. As a result of his trial conviction, Kerns faces a minimum of 5 years and a maximum term of imprisonment of 40 years, a fine of up to $5,000,000, and term of supervised release of at least 4-years and up to life, when he is sentenced by Chief United States District Judge Glenn T. Suddaby. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statutes the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors.
Ibn Spivey, 29, also from Elizabethtown, New Jersey, pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine just prior to the commencement of trial. Spivey is scheduled to be sentenced on October 28, 2021. As a result of his conviction, Spivey faces a minimum of 5 years and a maximum term of imprisonment of 40 years, a fine of up to $5,000,000, and term of supervised release of at least 4 years and up to life.
This case was investigated by the DEA and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Troy Anderson and Katherine Kopita.
Updated July 2, 2021