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South Carolina man sentenced to 240 months for armed meth trafficking in Knox County Ky

From the US Dept of Justice -

LONDON, Ky. - A Blacksburg, South Carolina man, Joe Barlow Owens, 44, was sentenced to 240 months in federal prison on Wednesday, before U.S. District Judge Claria Horn Boom, for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.

In his prior guilty plea, Owens admitted that he committed both offenses on February 25, 2019, in Knox County.

According to his guilty plea agreement, law enforcement officials searched his vehicle and found over 700 grams of methamphetamine, cash, and a loaded firearm, which Owens admitted was to protect his drugs and drug proceeds. Owens also admitted that he knew he had a prior felony conviction, for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. Owens pleaded guilty in March 2020.

Under federal law, Owens must serve 85 percent of his prison sentence. Upon his release, he will be under the supervision of the U.S. Probation Office for 10 years.

Robert M. Duncan, Jr., United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky; Jeffrey Todd Scott, Special Agent in Charge, DEA, Louisville Field Division; and Sheriff Mike Smith, Knox County Sheriff’s Department, jointly made the announcement.

The investigation was directed by DEA and the Knox County Sheriff’s Department. The United States was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Trimble.

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