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Press Release

Columbia Women Sentenced in Oxycodone Conspiracy

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

Contact Person:  Winston David Holliday, Jr. (803) 929-3000

Columbia, South Carolina ---- United States Attorney Bill Nettles stated today that Shawnetta Belton, age 32, and Althea Mack, age 35, both of Columbia, South Carolina, were sentenced yesterday for Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute Oxycodone, a violation of Title 21, U. S. C., § 846.  Chief United States District Judge Terry L. Wooten sentenced Belton to ten years imprisonment and Mack to two years imprisonment.  Both were immediately taken into custody.

Evidence presented during their change of plea hearings established that Belton worked for a doctor and had access to his prescription pad. She wrote prescriptions for oxycodone and distributed them to others to be filled.  Some of these unlawful prescriptions were filled in Columbia, others were filled in Beaufort.  Althea Mack was the go-between for the Beaufort prescriptions, receiving them from Belton and distributing them to co-conspirators in Beaufort.  Over ninety prescriptions were passed during the course of the conspiracy.

Previously, Desmond Washington, age 39, of Charlotte, North Carolina, was sentenced to 41 months imprisonment for his involvement in the conspiracy, and Latrincy Carter, age 30, of Columbia, was sentenced to 37 months imprisonment.

United States Attorney Bill Nettles stated, “Those who traffic in prescription drugs prey on the addictions of some of our most vulnerable citizens. Our office has dedicated itself to pursuing these drug dealers to punish their conduct and to provide a disincentive to those who would profit from selling pills illegally.” 

Fifth Circuit Solicitor Dan Johnson stated, “It’s always a good day when the US Attorney and I can work together to make the community better and to create the positive outcomes that the public expects.”  Adds Johnson, “I look forward to working with the United States Attorney and all law enforcement agencies in Richland and Kershaw Counties to further rid our communities of drugs and drug offenders.”

The case was investigated by investigators with the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Richland County Sheriff’s Office, and the S.C. DHEC Bureau of Drug Control.  Assistant United States Attorney Winston Holliday of the Columbia office and Assistant Solicitor Joseph Shenkar of Richland County prosecuted the case.


Updated May 20, 2015