For Immediate Release
Gang Leader Sentenced to More Than 23 Years in Prison for Possessing a Gun and Drugs
Tampa, Florida – United States District Judge Virginia M. Covington has sentenced Craigory Reeves (29, Tampa) to 23 years and 4 months in federal prison for possessing approximately 13 grams of eutylone with the intent to distribute it and possessing a loaded 9-millimeter handgun. Reeves, a career offender and leader of the Money Power Respect (MPR) gang, had pleaded guilty on June 16, 2020.
According to information presented during Reeves’s sentencing hearing, MPR was formed in approximately 2007 within the Indian River (FL) Correctional Facility. MPR has since become one of the dominant and most violent gangs in the Tampa area. Reeves was one of the gang’s original seven leaders.
According to the plea agreement, on September 5, 2019, Reeves conducted a meeting of MPR members. After he left the meeting, law enforcement officers stopped the car he was riding in for a traffic infraction. Officers then smelled marijuana inside, removed Reeves from the car, and searched his pockets with his consent. Inside Reeves’s pockets, officers found approximately 13 grams of eutylone (a controlled substance that is similar to MDMA or “Ecstasy”) and three 9-millimeter bullets. Inside the car, officers found Reeves’s bag, which contained a loaded 9-millimeter pistol and additional 9-millimeter bullets, most of which matched the caliber and brand of the ammunition that had been found in Reeves’s pocket.
Reeves admitted that he had intended to distribute the eutylone and that he possessed the pistol and ammunition to protect himself, his drugs, and his money while engaging in criminal activity, including narcotics trafficking.
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. It is part of an ongoing effort to dismantle the MPR gang that has so far resulted in charges against four defendants. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michael M. Gordon.
This case was prosecuted as part of the Department of Justice’s “Project Safe Neighborhoods” Program (PSN), which is a nationwide, crime reduction strategy aimed at decreasing violent crime in communities. It involves a comprehensive approach to public safety — one that includes investigating and prosecuting crimes, along with prevention and reentry efforts. In the Middle District of Florida, U.S. Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez coordinates PSN efforts in cooperation with various federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.