DRUGS

Hed: More sentenced from John Butler meth gang

- One defendant received 120 months in federal prison.

By LEESHA FAULKNER

Daily Journal

OXFORD – Members of the John Butler methamphetamine gang have received federal prison sentences, bringing to a close at least a portion of the massive drugs case.

Thursday, Brian Evans of Plantersville and Jeff Cayson of Nettleton appeared in U.S. District Court to receive their sentences.

Judge Michael P. Mills sentenced Evans to 120 months in federal prison for aiding and abetting in possession with intent to distribute or sell methamphetamine. Evans also will serve three years supervised probation after his release and will be ineligible for federal benefits for five years. Other counts of distribution and possession of weapon in commission of a crime were dismissed at the request of the prosecutor.

Cayson received 78 months in federal prison for aiding and abetting in possession with intent to distribute or sell methamphetamine. He also will serve three years supervised probation after his release and will be ineligible for federal benefits for five years. The same two other counts were dropped against him as were dismissed against Evans.

While Cayson’s sentencing lasted a few minutes, Evans’ hearing lasted nearly two hours. He had challenged the potential time he would serve, asking the court to reevaluate. Evans’ attorney, Gregory Park, tried to paint a picture of his client as a heavy drug user, but not a dealer.

Government witnesses showed another side of Evans. John Butler of Falkner, the so-called head of the gang, said Evans purchased massive amounts of methamphetamine from him – as much as 10-15 pounds at about $16,000 a pound over about two years. “We was all selling crystal meth,” Butler told the court.

Another witness, Bobby King Sr. of Pontotoc, said he fronted Evans money to purchase the dope in large quantities to sell. A third witness, Levi Ray of Tupelo, said he bought methamphetamine from Evans to sell and paid Evans from the profit.

Contact Daily Journal county-courts reporter Leesha Faulkner at 678-1590 or leesha.faulkner@djournal.com