Loris Man Enters Guilty Plea in Federal Court on Gun and Drug Charges
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of South Carolina
Contact Person: Lance Crick (864) 282-2100
Columbia, South Carolina ---- United States Attorney Beth Drake stated today that Norad Arcane McCullough, age 24, of Loris, pled guilty on Monday in federal court in Florence, to possession with intent to distribute heroin, a violation of Title 21, United States Code, Section 841(a)(1) and 841(b)(1)(C) and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 924(c)(1). United States District Judge R. Bryan Harwell of Florence, accepted the plea and will impose sentence after he has reviewed the presentence report which will be prepared by the U.S. Probation Office.
Evidence presented at the change of plea hearing established that on October 21, 2016, a Conway car dealership notified the Horry County Police Department that they had located a backpack in a car they had repossessed which contained a firearm and what appeared to be heroin. Shortly after officers arrived at the scene, McCullough called the dealership and stated that his backpack had been left in the car that was repossessed and that he was coming to pick it up. When McCullough arrived and claimed the backpack, he was arrested. McCullough admitted that the firearm and the 90 bundles of heroin belonged to him. McCullough also told law enforcement that he had been distributing the heroin. Individuals who sell illegal drugs while armed with a firearm are subject to prosecution under Title 18, United States Code, Section 924(c) due to the inherent danger of violence created by the presence of the firearm.
Ms. Drake stated the defendant faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years on the drug charge and a mandatory minimum sentence of five years and a maximum of life in prison on the firearms charge.
The case was investigated by agents of the Horry County Police Department. Assistant United States Attorney Buddy Bethea of the Florence office handled the case.
Updated March 2, 2017