Danville man gets 35 years in methamphetamine distribution case

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JOHN REITMAN

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A Danville man has been sentenced in a US District Court to 35 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to his role in the drug distribution racket.

William Hargis

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Kentucky, William Hargis, 24, of Danville pleaded guilty Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Lexington to conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute 52.5 pounds of crystal meth, possession of firearms in the course of drug trafficking and criminal conspiracy to launder money.

“Illegal meth trafficking has an immense impact on our communities and often brings guns, violence and other crimes,” said Carlton S. Shier, IV, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky in a press release. “We remain committed to prosecuting those who engage in this serious conduct, and we hope convictions like these will serve as a warning to those who continue to engage in it.”

During a traffic stop in May 2021, Hargis was found in possession of methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana, a digital scale, plastic bags and cash, according to his plea agreement. Law enforcement officials investigating a crystal meth distribution ring in Lexington said they eventually learned that Hargis was storing, cutting and packaging drugs at a Lexington office building. Authorities say they found more than 50 pounds of methamphetamine, four firearms, cocaine and other drug trafficking items at that office building.

Hargis told investigators he traveled to casinos in southern Indiana to launder drug proceeds.

Hargis pleaded guilty to the charges in April and was sentenced Wednesday by U.S. District Chief Judge Danny C. Reeves. By federal law, Hargis must serve at least 85% of his sentence before being eligible for release, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Hargis’ case was the second methamphetamine distribution case tried Wednesday in Lexington. In a separate case, Deangelo Devon Grant, 36, of Los Angeles, was sentenced to 22 years in prison, after pleading guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute crystal meth.

According to Grant’s plea agreement, on August 16, 2021, he received a package that had been shipped from California to Lexington that contained approximately 48 pounds of crystal meth for distribution. Grant told investigators he flew in from California to receive the package, in Lexington. Grant’s vehicle was stopped by law enforcement, where they discovered the drugs.

“Anyone who poisons our communities through the sale of illegal drugs must be arrested and brought to justice,” J. Todd Scott, special agent in charge of the Louisville Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration, said in a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office. “I’m very proud of the work done by the men and women of the DEA and our law enforcement counterparts on both of these.”

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