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Press Release

Court Sentences Mobile County Man to 48 Months in Federal Prison for Weapons and Drug Offense

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Alabama

United States Attorney Richard W. Moore of the Southern District of Alabama announced that United States District Court Chief Judge Kristi K. DuBose sentenced John Robert Payne on November 30, 2018 to serve a term of imprisonment of 48 months followed by 3 years of supervised release for violating Title 21, United States Code, Section 841(a)(1), Possession with the Intent to Distribute a Controlled Substance, Methamphetamine, and  violating Title 18, United States Code, Section 924 (c), Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime. The defendant’s guilty plea was accepted by the Court on July 30, 2018.

Facts established through Court records revealed that on July 17, 2017, a reliable confidential informant (CI) working for the Mobile County Street Enforcement Narcotics Team (MCSENT) reported that Payne was offering to sell him methamphetamine.  Officers set up a “buy/bust” undercover operation and detained the defendant when he showed up at the location designated as the buy location at a Burger King parking lot in Mobile County. After being detained at the location the defendant admitted he was a methamphetamine seller and that he had methamphetamine in his pocket to sell to the CI.  The defendant was planning to sell the CI approximately 3 grams of methamphetamine (actual).  The defendant also had a firearm in the center console of the vehicle that the defendant bought off the streets to protect his drug trade. Four days later in a completely separate investigation, a Federal Bureau of Investigation CI made an undercover buy of .5 grams of methamphetamine from Payne.
The case was investigated by the Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Mobile County Street Enforcement Narcotics Team (MCSENT) and the City of Saraland Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDEFT) Lead Attorney, Assistant United States Attorney George F. May and Assistant United States Attorney Lawrence J. Bullard for the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Alabama.

Updated December 10, 2018