Cocaine: Ex-black spring break promoter gets nearly 20 years

December 20, 2018

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) — A former black spring break promoter has been sentenced to nearly 20 years in prison for plotting to bring cocaine from Texas to Mississippi.

A federal judge in Gulfport, Mississippi, sentenced Keith Lavell Brown, 46, of Moss Point on Wednesday to 19 years and 7 months, a $35,000 fine and five years’ supervised release once he’s out of prison.

Judge Louis Guirola Jr. held Brown responsible for 49 kilograms (108 pounds) of the drug, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a news release.

Brown pleaded guilty in August to conspiracy to possess more than 5 kilograms of cocaine with intent to distribute it.

Brown’s indictment said the ring started in 2009. However, his plea admitted to a two-year conspiracy, from 2015 until August 2017.

The investigation began when Louisiana State Police found 15 kilograms (33 pounds) of cocaine in a vehicle driven by Brown’s cousin in 2016, according to the news release.

Brown and “another individual with Mexican cartel connections” had followed the vehicle before it was stopped, prosecutors said.

A later traffic stop in Mississippi turned up 11 kilograms (24 pounds) of cocaine, and the driver told investigators he had delivered 13 kilograms (28.6 pounds) of the drug to Brown on an earlier run, according to the news release.

The Sun Herald of Biloxi reported in April that Brown promoted Biloxi’s Black Beach Weekend from 2009 until 2014.

Update hourly