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Man who ran drug network gets nine-year sentence

A 59-year-old man who formerly worked as a security guard to legendary entertainers will spend nine years in prison for a federal drug-related offense.

Last October, a federal jury in Alexandria, Virginia, found him guilty for conspiring to distribute oxycodone. The man, from the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, had been convicted of distributing the pills in Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C., according to prosecutors.

Witnesses at his trial last fall said the man ran his drug-distribution business from 2003 to 2011. He would illegally acquire the oxycodone pills and then sell them to dealers, who in turn sold them to users. In all, the man allegedly resold more than 20,000 oxycodone pills in areas near schools and other public facilities, according to prosecutors.

Oxycodone is used to relieve severe pain.

Witnesses said the man had devised an elaborate way to get prescriptions for oxycodone by using different identities and dressing in disguise. By wearing wigs and hats, he was able to fill prescriptions in a variety of names at local pharmacies without raising suspicion. They said he also would fake injury and pain as he walked through the pharmacy, wearing a brace on his neck or using crutches, although he often arrived there on bicycle or by moped.

In what might have been one final disguise, the man sat before the jury during his trial in a wheelchair, even though he had not been known to use a wheelchair before he was arrested.

According to court documents, one confidential informant said he or she had bought pills on hundreds of occasions during a two-year span and that the man had brought the oxycodone to the informant's residence in Manassas, Virginia.

The sentence shows what can happen if one is convicted on drug charges. If one is aware that she or she is the target of a drug investigation, they should consult with a criminal defense attorney, who can ensure that all legal rights are respected.

Source: Inside NoVA, "Celebrity security guard gets 9 years for drug trafficking in Northern Va.," Amanda Stewart, Jan. 27, 2012

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