KANSAS CITY, Mo. – A Jonesboro, Mississippi, man has pleaded guilty in federal court to transporting more than five pounds of methamphetamine and nearly three pounds of heroin through Kansas City, Missouri, en route to St. Louis, Mo.
Willie Lewis Braison, 47, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes on Wednesday, Sept. 16, to one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute, and one count of possessing heroin with the intent to distribute.
A Kansas City, Mo., Police Department detective saw Braison get off the train at a local station on Jan. 17, 2019. The detective contacted Braison and asked to search his suitcase.
By pleading guilty, Braison admitted that he was carrying a suitcase that contained methamphetamine and heroin aboard a train from Los Angeles, California, for delivery in St. Louis. Inside the suitcase, five bundles that contained a total of 5.1 pounds of methamphetamine were hidden inside a cardboard box that was labeled as a variety pack of cookies. Also inside the suitcase were two bundles of heroin hidden inside a pair of size 18 high-top tennis shoes. The bundles, shaped like the insoles of the shoes, weighed a total of 2.9 pounds.
Under federal statutes, Braison is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of 80 years in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Trey Alford. It was investigated by the Kansas City Interdiction Task Force and the Drug Enforcement Administration.