On November 2, 2012, the Department of Justice announced that Derek Lucas of Memphis, Tennessee was sentenced to life in prison for conspiring to rob drug dealers. He had a massive violent crime history, and he was sentenced by District Judge S. Thomas Anderson.
Lucas was convicted under 21 U.S.C. § 846 for intention to distribute about five kilograms of a cocaine mixture. He was also convicted under 18 U.S.C. § 924(c) for possessing firearms for the furtherance of drug trafficking activity. The violation of § 846 carries a penalty of 10 years to life in prison and a fine up to $10,000,000. A violation of § 924(c) carries a penalty of five years to life in prison and a fine up to $250,000.
During the investigation, Lucas was approached by an undercover agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) who claimed they wanted to retaliate against certain drug dealers. Lucas and other co-conspirators agreed to help steal five kilograms of cocaine along with money. Lucas was arrested on the day the crime was supposed to occur, and officers obtained the following weapons from Lucas and the co-defendants:
• fully loaded Bryco Arms .380 caliber 9 mm pistol
• Romarm/Cugir, Model SAR-1 rifle equipped with a magazine capable of holding 57 rounds
Lucas received the life sentence because of past criminal convictions. Co-defendant Derrick Dowdy received 180 months in prison, and the other co-defendants (Neal, Wallace, and Scott) received 120 months in prison.
U.S. Attorney Edward L. Stanton stated, “The life sentence imposed by the court should send a clear message to individuals who seek to terrorize our community through brazen and violent acts, that such wanton conduct will not be tolerated and will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
Source: Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives