Natchez court acts in drug ring case

Published 11:37 pm Thursday, January 10, 2008

NATCHEZ (AP) — A suspect in a federal drug trafficking investigation that led to several arrests has been sentenced to five years in prison.

Christopher Shaun Walker, 29, was arrested as part of a multi-agency drug raid in June. He was sentenced Tuesday by U.S. District Judge David Bramlette in Natchez.

Authorities said Walker and the others charged in the investigation were responsible for 70 percent to 75 percent of the crack distributed in Vicksburg. More than 17 pounds of crack was being dealt every month, authorities had estimated.

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Walker had pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine with intent to distribute in October.

Walker, who was also fined $1,500, received the minimum sentence for his charge. He was facing up to 20 years and potentially $2 million in fines.

Arrested in the same drug raid and sentenced in 2006 were Tommie Shepherd, 46, and Larry Jones, 31. Facing the same charges as Walker, both were sentenced by Bramlette to serve five years and fined $1,500.

Also Tuesday, Charles Price, 53, and Kenny Tyler, 35, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute cocaine, which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison, as well as up to $4 million in fines. They will be sentenced March 18.

Others convicted and awaiting sentencing for conspiracy to distribute cocaine are Michael Tyler, 35; Keafur Wallace, 25; and Cadie Mae Bunch, 28.

Tyler, identified by prosecutors as the leader of the drug ring, was scheduled to be sentenced Tuesday but had his sentencing postponed due to the death of his lawyer, William Barnett of Jackson.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Darren LaMarca said Wednesday that another attorney will be appointed to represent Tyler.

Wallace and Bunch are scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 7.

The final suspect arrested in the drug raid, John Dillard, 61, is scheduled for trial Monday in Natchez.


Information from: Vicksburg Post,


Information from: The Vicksburg Post,