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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Florida
For Immediate Release
Roger B. Handberg, United States Attorney
www.justice.gov/usao-mdfl
Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Career Offender Sentenced to 14 Years in Federal Prison for Selling Fentanyl

Tampa, Florida – U.S. District Judge Steven D. Merryday has sentenced Demetrius Haynes (37, Tampa) to 14 years in federal prison for conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute fentanyl and cocaine, and possession with the intent to distribute fentanyl and cocaine. Because of Haynes’s lengthy criminal history, he was designated a Career Offender for purposes of sentencing. The court also ordered Haynes to forfeit $6,000 received from the sale of a Nissan Maxima which had been used by Haynes to facilitate the drug trafficking conspiracy. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives had previously administratively forfeited approximately $46,161 that was traceable proceeds of the charged offenses, a Jimenez Arms pistol, and 34 rounds of ammunition. Haynes had pleaded guilty on August 29, 2022.

According to court documents, in January 2021, state and federal law enforcement began an investigation targeting fentanyl distribution in the Tampa area. During that investigation, agents identified Haynes as one of those distributors. As part of the investigation, law enforcement engaged in multiple undercover narcotics transactions with Haynes where they purchased fentanyl and cocaine from him. They made purchases of fentanyl and cocaine directly from Haynes on two occasions in January 2021 and four occasions in February 2021.

On February 12, 2021, the day of the final drug sale and Haynes’s arrest, ATF agents, assisted by the Tampa Police Department, executed a search warrant at Haynes’s residence. During the search, agents seized additional amounts of cocaine and fentanyl, a safe that contained approximately $34,000, a Jimenez Arms .380 caliber firearm, currency totaling approximately $6,850, approximately 30 rounds of ammunition, and an extended magazine.

This case was investigated by ATF and the Tampa Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Shauna S. Hale.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

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