Natchez, Mississippi – A Victorville, Calif. man and his wife were convicted today by U.S. District Judge David C. Bramlette, III, of participating in an interstate drug trafficking operation that distributed amounts of kilograms drugs in the Natchez, MS area from 2016 through 2018, U.S. Attorney Darren J. LaMarca and Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Brad L. Byerley announced.
Thomas Jerome Mitchell, 37, and Justine Chambers, 32, were indicted by a federal grand jury and later pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine. Mitchell was sentenced today to 66 months in federal prison and Chambers was sentenced to 38 months.
According to court documents, Mitchell and Chambers conspired with Wesley Bell, of Natchez, Jimmie Lee Swearengen, Jr., of Mesquite, TX, and Arthur Wilson, of Moreno Valley, CA, to distribute kilogram amounts of methamphetamine in the area. by Natchez. Swearengen was separately sentenced today to 90 months in prison for his involvement in drug trafficking operations in the Natchez area. Arthur Wilson was convicted by a federal jury in August 2022 of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine and marijuana, as well as conspiracy to commit money laundering, for his exploitation of a separate drug trafficking organization in the Natchez area. Wilson is due to be sentenced on January 11, 2023. Bell is currently awaiting sentencing.
This case is part of an operation by the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OECDTF). The OECDTF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, multi-agency approach focused on intelligence, which leverages the forces of federal authorities, state and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.
This OECDTF case is the result of an extensive investigation into the illegal distribution of narcotics conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force in Atlanta, GA, Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics, Adams County Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Mississippi Highway Patrol, and the Pearl Police Department.
Assistant United States Attorney Carla J. Clark prosecuted these cases.