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Paroled Virginia Beach man charged with federal crimes

A Virginia Beach man, with a criminal record spanning more than two decades, has been charged in a U.S. District Court for being in possession of a loaded gun, something convicted felons are not allowed to have. Virginia state attorneys introduced the charges, which included marijuana possession, before federal prosecutors took over the case.

The 42-year-old has a long history of run-ins with law enforcement, including jail time for drug-related offenses and murder, which started in 1989. He was first convicted of cocaine distribution. Two years later, a murder in a Norfolk neighborhood that was said to be revenge for an incident of road rage, sent the man to jail for four years followed by parole.

In 1998, a guilty plea landed the Virginia Beach man in a South Carolina jail for cocaine distribution for more than two years. When he was released and returned to Virginia, authorities picked him up for violating parole. He was later charged in separate incidents with drunk and reckless driving and assault in the state of Washington. The assault charges were dropped.

In March, local Virginia Beach police and the FBI teamed up to watch the man's home after an informant told investigators that he had seen more than half a dozen kilos of cocaine and about 50 pounds of marijuana inside the Barberton Drive townhouse.

An FBI affidavit says drug agents learned that the paroled convict lived in the suspected drug house and were able to observe drug deals taking place. When FBI agents spoke to the defendant, they discovered a .45-caliber handgun concealed in his BMW's trunk.

Drug agents also raided the home and found a separate storage unit where drug paraphernalia, drug residue, $30,000 in cash and four ounces of marijuana.

A federal judge remanded the suspect to jail in advance of a bond hearing.

This Virginia man's case is a clear example of the serious consequences of drug charges. Being arrested for a drug crime can be a frightening experience, regardless of whether it's your first or third time. However, not everyone accused of committing a drug crime is guilty. Strong defenses can be built to challenge drug charges.

Source: PilotOnline.com, "Paroled killer from Va. Beach faces gun, drug charges," Tim McGlone, 3 June 2011

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