Metro-East News

Man convicted of selling crack, marijuana gets 35 years

An East St. Louis man has been sentenced to 35 years in prison on federal drug and gun-trafficking offenses.

A jury in August found David L. Bradford, 33, guilty of six felony offenses. He was convicted of conspiracy to distribute and possess cocaine and marijuana; transfer of a firearm and ammunition to a previously-convicted felon; two counts of distribution of cocaine base; possession with intent to distribute marijuana; and unlawful possession of firearm by a previously-convicted felon.

Bradford faced up to life in prison. Judge David Herndon sentenced Bradford to 420 months. Bradford must serve eight years of supervised release. He also was fined $2,400.

According to evidence presented at trial, prosecutors believed Bradford was a leader, manager or supervisor of a conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine and marijuana in St. Clair and Madison counties from February 2014 to June 9, 2014. Prosecutors had audio/video recordings that showed Bradford distributed crack cocaine on March 4, 2014, and April 18, 2014, from his East St. Louis residence.

Police reported finding marijuana in Bradford’s residence during the execution of a search warrant on June 9, 2014. Police also recovered an SKS 7.62-by-39mm-caliber rifle, which was propped up against the wall in his bedroom. Police also reported finding a .45-caliber rifle and a .22-caliber rifle hidden behind a makeshift wall in the basement of the residence. Police said all of the guns had extended magazines and were loaded.

Police said Bradford also aided and abetted the transfer of a semiautomatic pistol to himself. Evidence was presented at trial that linked eight firearms to Bradford. As a previously-convicted felon, Bradford was not allowed to possess firearms.

“The ATF will continue to work hand-in-hand with our law enforcement partners to ensure that armed violent offenders are held accountable for their illicit activities, and this particular investigation highlights our commitment to do so,” ATF Acting Special Agent in Charge George Lauder said in a news release.

Don O’Brien: 618-239-2626, @DOBrienBND