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West Monroe man sentenced to 20 Years for drug trafficking

West Monroe resident Paul Anthony Lewis has been sentenced to 240 months in prison, followed by five years of supervised release, on numerous drug trafficking charges. The sentence was handed down by United States District Judge David C. Joseph, following Lewis' conviction by a jury in February.

Lewis was found guilty of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, cocaine, cocaine base, and fentanyl, as well as possession with intent to distribute these same substances. The charges followed an investigation into Lewis' suspected drug trafficking activities by agents with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Metro Narcotics Unit of Ouachita Parish.

During the investigation, agents conducted surveillance of a stash house used by Lewis and observed packages being delivered by the U.S. Postal Service to that address. A subsequent search of the house revealed large quantities of fentanyl, methamphetamine, cocaine, cocaine base (also known as crack cocaine), and promethazine. In addition, Lewis used his telephone to negotiate drug trafficking transactions with unindicted co-conspirators in Texas and the Western District of Louisiana.

Speaking after the sentencing, U.S. Attorney Brandon Br. Brown said: "The choices of this defendant to continue to possess and distribute a buffet of illegal substances, even after having spent time in federal prison before, has resulted in him now spending the later years of his life behind bars. We continue to stand by our commitment to make it a priority in the Western District of Louisiana to have zero tolerance for those who choose to sell narcotics, especially the most dangerous narcotic of all, fentanyl."

Lewis has a lengthy criminal history, including a federal conviction for possession with intent to distribute cocaine base in the Eastern District of Louisiana in 2001, for which he was sentenced to 120 months in federal prison.

The case was investigated by the DEA, Metro Narcotics Unit of Ouachita Parish, and U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys William Gaskins and Alexander C. Van Hook, Special Counsel to the U.S. Attorney.