Duplin County drug trafficker sentenced to 24 years in prison

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WILMINGTON, N.C. — A Duplin County man was sentenced after his arrest on drug charges.

Jeremy Cline, 36, of Duplin County was sentenced to 288 months in prison for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribution of 500 grams or more of methamphetamine and possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine. 

According to court documents, evidence presented in court, and other documents, on July 28, 2019, Cline and his girlfriend were stopped by a Sampson County Sheriff’s Deputy for a traffic violation in Clinton, North Carolina. Cline provided the deputy with a false name during the traffic stop.  A records check determined that this person had an outstanding order for arrest. When questioned by law enforcement, Cline admitted that he had given a false name.  Cline also had an order for arrest.  A search of the car led to the discovery of more than 10 grams of methamphetamine.  On October 1, 2019, a Sampson County Sheriff’s Deputy observed Cline speeding on a motorcycle and attempted to stop him.  Cline did not stop and drove through a four way stop and flashing red light in the town of Roseboro. Cline lost control of his motorcycle, wrecked it, and then fled on foot.  Cline was ultimately apprehended in the woods.  Cline had more than $1,800 on his person.  Following an interview of Cline at a later date, law enforcement found that Cline had hidden 3 ounces of methamphetamine and a .40 caliber handgun that he later retrieved.   On October 16, 2019, undercover Duplin County Narcotic Detectives ordered 3 ounces of methamphetamine from Cline.  Subsequently, Cline and his girlfriend were stopped and arrested in the area of Norwood Street in Wallace.  Law enforcement recovered the methamphetamine on the floorboard.  On June 28, 2021, while Cline was awaiting sentencing in this case, a New Hanover County Detention Officer intercepted a letter that was addressed to Cline.  A test of the letter revealed that it had been soaked in LSD.

During the investigation, law enforcement was able to determine that Cline was responsible for possessing with the intent to distribute and distributing 30 kilograms of methamphetamine.  Cline had prior convictions for felony burglary and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

This is part of operation Fighting Jelly Fish which is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level drug traffickers, money launders, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten the United States by using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.

G. Norman Acker, III, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina made the announcement after sentencing by Chief U.S. District Judge Richard E. Myers II. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the Drug Enforcement Administration, Duplin, New Hanover and Sampson County Sheriff’s Offices investigated the case and Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Severo prosecuted the case.

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