DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Northern District of Oklahoma

For Immediate Release

Monday, November 22, 2021
Clinton J. Johnson
, United States Attorney
Contact: Public Affairs

California Man Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison for Selling Methamphetamine in Northeastern Oklahoma

A man who was arrested after a Mannford police officer discovered methamphetamine, fentanyl, and firearms in his vehicle was sentenced in federal court Monday, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson.

U.S. District Judge Gregory K. Frizzell sentenced Eric Steven Bentley, 35, of Bakersfield, California, to 15 years in federal prison followed by five years of supervised release.

“Eric Bentley traveled to northeastern Oklahoma to exchange deadly methamphetamine for guns and cash,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson. “Illicit drug deals and firearms are a recipe for violence and suffering. Because of the work of the Mannford Police Department, DEA, and ATF, this defendant will no longer be able to operate his illegal drug business in our communities.”

Bentley pleaded guilty July 27, 2021, to possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute and to possession of firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

In his plea agreement, Bentley stated that on Oct. 31, 2020, he and two codefendants, Derrick Deeds and Nicole Dileva, possessed more than 500 grams of methamphetamine with intent to distribute the drug. He said the trio traveled from Bakersfield, California, to the Northern District of Oklahoma to sell the methamphetamine and had already distributed quantities of the methamphetamine in exchange for cash and firearms.

He further stated that the three defendants possessed a Hermann Weihrauch (Arminius) .38 Special caliber revolver, a Jimenez Arms, Inc. 9 mm Luger caliber semi-automatic pistol, and a 9 mm privately made firearm. Bentley, Deeds, and Dileva received two of the guns as payment for methamphetamine and used the firearms for protection while selling the drugs.

The three were charged after an October 2020 traffic stop conducted by the Mannford Police Department. During a probable cause search of the vehicle, officers discovered three pounds of methamphetamine, pills later determined to be fentanyl and oxycodone, and the three firearms.

Deeds, 36, and Dileva, 35, both of Bakersfield, also pleaded guilty in July. Deeds was sentenced to 78 months in prison, and Dileva was sentenced to 60 months in prison.

The Mannford Police Department, Drug Enforcement Administration, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jessica L. Wright and Justin G. Bish are prosecuting the case.


Dallas Field Division