Federal Judge Sentences Methamphetamine Trafficker To Over 17 Years In Prison

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – James Kristoffer Cantley, 39, formerly of Newton, N.C., was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Kenneth D. Bell to 210 months in prison and five years of supervised release for trafficking methamphetamine, announced William T. Stetzer, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina. In July 2021, Cantley pleaded guilty to drug trafficking conspiracy, possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.

Cantley is one of 14 defendants indicted by a federal grand jury in June 2020, for trafficking methamphetamine from Georgia into Western North Carolina. According to filed court documents and court proceedings, from 2018 through April 2019, the defendants were involved in a drug network that trafficked and distributed methamphetamine in Catawba, Lincoln, Caldwell, and Alexander Counties and elsewhere.  Over the course of the investigation, law enforcement seized narcotics, at least 23 firearms, and more than $250,000 in drug proceeds.

The other 12 other defendants sentenced to date are: 

The remaining defendant, Jonathan Corey Daniel, has pleaded guilty to drug trafficking conspiracy and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, and is currently awaiting sentencing.

In making today’s announcement Acting U.S. Attorney Stetzer thanked the following agencies for their investigative efforts which led to federal charges: the DEA in Charlotte, Asheville, and Atlanta; the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation; the North Carolina State Highway Patrol; the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office; the Newton Police Department; the Conover Police Department; the Maiden Police Department; the Hickory Police Department; the Longview Police Department; the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office; the Granite Falls Police Department; the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office; the Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office; the Huntersville Police Department; the Cornelius Police Department; the Mint Hill Police Department; the Pineville Police Department; the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department; the Monroe Police Department; the Taylorsville Police Department; the Gaston County Police Department; the Georgia Highway Patrol; the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia; the Georgia Bureau of Investigation; the Georgia Department of Corrections; the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia; and the Commerce Police Department in Georgia.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Hess, of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Charlotte, is prosecuting the case.                                                        


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