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Press Release

Jones County Man Sentenced to Over 12 Years in Prison for Drug Conspiracy

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Mississippi
Defendant sold drugs with Illegal Alien Co-Conspirator near Children’s Hospital in Jackson

Jackson, Miss. – Matthew Williams, 33, of Jones County, Mississippi, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Henry T. Wingate to serve 146 months in federal prison, followed by five years of supervised release, for conspiracy to distribute 2.6 pounds of methamphetamine and 2.1 pounds of heroin, announced U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst and Brad L. Byerley, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).   Williams was also ordered to pay a $1,500 fine. 

In May, 2019, Williams and Soto-Leon, an illegal alien from Mexico, reached an agreement to distribute heroin and methamphetamine.  To assist Soto-Leon, Williams made contact with one or more individuals in order to find a buyer for illegal drugs in the possession of Soto-Leon.  Through these contacts by Williams, a buyer was identified.  Williams spoke directly to the buyer and stated that Soto-Leon was in possession of approximately 3 pounds of methamphetamine known as “ICE” and one kilogram of heroin that he was trying to sell.  Williams connected the buyer to Soto-Leon, who began communicating directly with the buyer.  Soto-Leon and the buyer reached an agreement on the price for all of the methamphetamine and heroin.  Unknown to either Williams or Soto-Leon, the buyer was actually an undercover agent.

On May 2, 2019, Soto-Leon and the buyer met at a location near the Blair E. Batson Hospital in Jackson where Soto-Leon provided the buyer with methamphetamine and heroin.  Williams had assisted the buyer and Soto-Leon by giving them directions to the place where they met.  Lab tests later confirmed that Soto-Leon had provided 414.7 grams of methamphetamine which was 99% pure and 424.2 grams of heroin. 

On May 3, 2019, Soto-Leon and the buyer met again at a location in Pearl, Mississippi, where Soto-Leon again gave the buyer methamphetamine and heroin.  Lab tests later confirmed that Soto-Leon had provided 772.4 grams of methamphetamine which was 98% pure and two containers of heroin containing 344.6 grams heroin and 228.8 grams of heroin. Once the second batch of controlled substances were given to the buyer, law enforcement immediately arrested Soto-Leon.  Williams was arrested a few days later.

In total, Soto-Leon and Williams conspired to sell and sold 2.6 pounds of methamphetamine and 2.1 pounds of heroin to the undercover DEA officer.  The methamphetamine sold is a type of methamphetamine known as “ICE” due to its purity.

The defendants were indicted and pled guilty before Judge Wingate on October 18, 2019.  Edgar Soto-Leon remains in federal custody and is awaiting sentencing.

The case was investigated by the DEA, the Hinds County Sheriff’s Department, the Jones County Sheriff’s Department, the Pearl Police Department, and the Richland Police Department.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Dave Fulcher.


Updated June 29, 2020

Drug Trafficking