Conway Man Sentenced to Nearly Four Years in Federal Prison on Drug Charge | USAO-SC

Florence, South Carolina — United States Attorney Peter M. McCoy, Jr., announced today that Gabriel Santos-Canales, 37, of Conway, was sentenced to nearly four years in federal prison after pleading guilty to possessing controlled substances with intent to distribute the substances.

Evidence presented to the court showed that on October 31, 2019, the Fifteenth Circuit Drug Enforcement Unit (DEU) located Santos-Canales at a hotel in Conway. Upon leaving the hotel, Santos-Canales was arrested on outstanding warrants. DEU agents secured a search warrant for a room in the hotel, which was registered to Santos-Canales. A search of the room revealed 24.55 grams of heroin and fentanyl, 24.97 grams of methamphetamine, and several thousand dollars in cash.

Chief United States District Judge R. Bryan Harwell sentenced Santos-Canales to 46 months in federal prison, to be followed by a three-year term of court-ordered supervision. There is no parole in the federal system.

The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Fifteenth Circuit DEU.

This case was prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

Assistant United States Attorney Lauren Hummel of the Florence office prosecuted the case.


The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of our agency at

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