North Carolina man sentenced to 20 years in prison for drug, firearm charges

Published 8:38 am Sunday, November 14, 2021

A Supply, North Carolina man was sentenced November 4, 2021 to 240 months in prison for conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute 280 grams or more of cocaine base (crack) and a quantity of cocaine; possession with intent to distribute cocaine and cocaine base (crack) and aiding and abetting; and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of North Carolina.

According to court documents, Shawn Deontae Hewett, 37, was named in an indictment filed on October 8, 2020. Hewett entered a plea of guilty on August 2, 2021.

In May 2019, agents learned that the defendant was selling large amounts of cocaine base (crack) from his residence in Supply, according to the release.

“On July 24, 2019, agents executed a search warrant at the defendant’s residence and seized cocaine, MDMA pills, currency, a 9mm firearm loaded with 27 rounds of ammunition, and a .38 caliber revolver,” stated the release. “Hewett admitted he had been distributing cocaine base since approximately 2015.”

According to the release, agents returned to the residence on November 5, 2020 to arrest Hewett on federal warrants: “In the residence, agents seized marijuana and cocaine base. In a baby bassinette, agents seized 4.5 grams of psilocybin mushrooms, 10 MDMA tablets, and a plastic bag that contained 0.8 grams of methamphetamine.”

G. Norman Acker III, acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, made the announcement. The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) investigated the cases and Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott A. Lemmon prosecuted. Assistance was also provided by the District Attorney’s office for Brunswick, Columbus and Bladen counties.

“Operation Hell Swamp is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) investigation,” stated the release. “OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten the United States by using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.”

This case is also part of the United States Attorney’s Office’s Take Back North Carolina Initiative, which “emphasizes the regional assignment of federal prosecutors to work with law enforcement and District Attorney’s Offices on a sustained basis in those communities to reduce the violent crime rate, drug trafficking, and crimes against law enforcement,” the release continued. More information about the initiative is available at this link: https://www.justice.gov/usao-ednc/tbnc.

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