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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Vermont

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Five Drug-Traffickers Sentenced for Roles In Multi-Year Conspiracy

The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that five individuals were sentenced by United States District Judge William K. Sessions for their roles in a multi-year conspiracy to distribute heroin, cocaine base, and cocaine.  On November 19, 2018, Robbull Bryant was sentenced to a 90-month term of imprisonment, Elijah Ealey was sentenced to a 33-month term of imprisonment, and Jason Bunch was sentenced to an 18-month term of imprisonment.  Earlier this year, Earl Brown was sentenced to a 48-month term of imprisonment and Alfred Spellman was sentenced to a 25-month term of imprisonment.

According to court filings, from late 2014 through August 26, 2016, the defendants conspired together to distribute large quantities of heroin, cocaine base, and cocaine in Brattleboro, Vermont and surrounding areas.  With the assistance of confidential informants, law enforcement conducted 11 separate controlled purchases of heroin, cocaine base, and cocaine from the members of the conspiracy.  On August 26, 2016, an argument over a drug debt led to a shootout between Bryant and another individual in which Bryant fired multiple rounds from a Ruger .40 caliber semiautomatic handgun in a residential neighborhood in Putney, Vermont.

Bryant was additionally convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm.  For his crimes he faced a 5-year mandatory minimum sentence and a statutory maximum term of 40 years in prison. The remaining defendants faced a statutory maximum term of 20 years in prison.  In imposing the sentences, Judge Sessions considered a number of factors, including the severity of the offense, the harm controlled substances have caused to Vermont communities, and the defendants’ criminal records.

United States Attorney Christina E. Nolan commended the efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Department of Homeland Security, Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, and the Vermont State Police for their work on this investigation.

The prosecution was handled by U.S. Attorney Nolan, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Nate Burris, and Paul Van de Graff.  Bryant was represented by Attorney Michelle Barth, Ealey was represented by Attorney Richard Bothfeld, Bunch was represented by Attorney Robert Sussman, Brown was represented by Attorney Chandler Matson, and Spellman was represented by Attorney Craig Nolan.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Opioids
Firearms Offenses
Component(s): 
Updated November 20, 2018