Former NFL player sentenced to prison on drug charge

Published 4:03 pm Thursday, August 13, 2020

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

A former NFL player was sentenced to 14 years in prison Wednesday for conspiring to distribute 2,200 pounds (1,000 kilograms) of marijuana and money laundering, federal prosecutors said.

Richard Dwight Alston, 39, engaged in a multi-year, cross-country conspiracy to traffic in large amounts of marijuana and distribute it in Raleigh, the U.S. Department of Justice said in a news release.

According to court documents, investigators executed a search warrant in November 2017 for apartments believed to be storage sites for Alston’s marijuana organization. During the search, agents found more than 40 pounds (18 kilograms) of marijuana and more than $371,000 in U.S. currency.

Get the latest headlines sent to you

Agents then arranged for delivery of Alston’s next drug shipment, leading to the arrest of two people believed to be responsible for delivering the marijuana intended for Alston and others. A search of their vehicle revealed seven large duffel bags containing almost 440 pounds (200 kilograms) of marijuana and almost $68,000 in cash.

A financial investigation conducted by the Internal Revenue Service showed Alston had laundered drug proceeds of over $2.7 million through a business bank account over a period of several years.

Alston, a native of Warrenton, played college football at East Carolina University and spent the 2004 season with the Cleveland Browns.



Forest drops lawsuit challenging Cooper executive orders

‘Reporting error’ fuels 200,000 COVID testing overcount in North Carolina