DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Florida

For Immediate Release

Tuesday, March 28, 2017
W. Stephen Muldrow
, United States Attorney
Contact: William Daniels

Convicted Felon Sentenced to More Than Six Years for Possessing Firearms and Ammunitions

Tampa, Florida – U.S. District Judge James D. Whittemore has sentenced Vaughn Matthews (25, St. Petersburg) to six years and six months in federal prison for possessing firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime and for possessing firearms and ammunition as a convicted felon. He pleaded guilty on December 22, 2016. 
 
According to court documents, law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Matthews’s residence on March 23, 2016. During the search, officers recovered over 20 pounds of marijuana, 3 firearms, more than 50 rounds of assorted ammunition, and over $86,000 in cash. Further investigation revealed that Matthews had been working with individuals in California and had trafficked at least 50 packages of marijuana into Florida via the mail. As a previously convicted felon, he is prohibited from possessing firearms or ammunition under federal law.
 
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the St. Petersburg Police Department, and the U.S. Postal Service. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kaitlin R. O’Donnell.
 
This is another case prosecuted as a part of the Department of Justice’s “Project Safe Neighborhoods” Program - a nationwide, gun-violence reduction strategy.  Acting United States Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow, along with Daryl R. McCrary, Special Agent in Charge, ATF, is coordinating the Project Safe Neighborhoods effort here in the Middle District of Florida in cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.
 
 
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Field Division: Tampa Field Division