Northern California

Authorities: Northern California man used clothing store as front to sell marijuana to teens

An American Canyon man faces up to 90 years in prison and more than $20 million in fines for using, officials suspect, his Vacaville clothing business as a front to sell drugs to high schoolers, the Department of Justice announced Monday.

Maurice Antoine Jefferson, 42, of American Canyon, was arrested Monday and charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and for possessing marijuana and cocaine for distribution within 1,000 feet of Will C. Wood High School on Marshall Road in Vacaville, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced. A federal grand jury returned a three-count indictment against him on Aug. 3, he said.

According to court documents, Jefferson was the sole proprietor of Vacaville’s Shredders Federation clothing store and allegedly used the business as a cover to distribute marijuana and cocaine to high school students and others and as a front for money laundering, officials said. When law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at the store in August 2016, they allegedly “found 6.4 pounds of marijuana, 129 grams of cocaine, and other indicia of drug distribution,” officials said. “Jefferson was carrying a 9 mm pistol with him when Vacaville Police Officers arrived at the business.”

Jefferson has a felony conviction and is not allowed to possess any firearms, they said.

If convicted of possessing marijuana with intent to distribute near a school zone, Jefferson faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine. If convicted of possessing cocaine with intent to distribute near a school zone, Jefferson faces a maximum statutory penalty of 60 years in prison and a $20 million fine. If convicted of possessing a firearm as a felon, he faces a maximum statutory penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, officials said.

Any sentence would be determined at the discretion of the district court after considering any applicable statutory factors and the federal sentencing guidelines.


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