In a recent case that highlights the ongoing efforts to combat illegal drug trafficking and firearm possession, Jasha Banks, also known as “Chocolate,” pleaded guilty to several federal violations. The charges include being a felon in possession of a firearm, possession with the intent to distribute controlled substances, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. The guilty plea was made before United States District Judge Susie Morgan and carries significant penalties, including imprisonment ranging from 5 years to life and substantial fines. This case is part of the Project Safe Neighborhoods program, which aims to reduce violent crime and gun violence in local communities. The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the New Orleans Police Department.
Title: New Orleans Woman Pleads Guilty to Federal Controlled Substances and Gun Control Violations
In a recent case in New Orleans, a woman named Jasha Banks, also known as “Chocolate,” pleaded guilty to multiple federal charges related to controlled substances and gun control violations. The case highlights the importance of law enforcement efforts to combat illegal drug trafficking and the possession of firearms by felons. This article will provide background information, detail the charges and penalties faced by the defendant, discuss the Project Safe Neighborhoods program, highlight the law enforcement agencies involved in the investigation, and provide additional sentencing information.
The illicit drug trade and the possession of firearms by convicted felons are serious concerns that pose significant threats to public safety. The illegal distribution and use of controlled substances contribute to violent crimes and can have devastating effects on individuals, families, and communities. Additionally, the possession of firearms by individuals with criminal records increases the risk of violence and further perpetuates illegal activities.
Jasha Banks, a 39-year-old woman from New Orleans, pleaded guilty to a three-count indictment before United States District Judge Susie Morgan. The charges against her include being a felon in possession of a firearm, possession with the intent to distribute controlled substances, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. The guilty plea indicates that Banks acknowledged her involvement in these criminal activities and accepted responsibility for her actions.
Charges and Penalties
Count 1 of the indictment charges Banks with being a felon in possession of a firearm, in violation of Title 18, U.S.C. §§ 922(g)(1) and 924(a)(8). If convicted, she could face up to 15 years of imprisonment, a fine of up to $250,000, and up to 3 years of supervised release.
Count 2 of the indictment alleges that Banks possessed controlled substances with the intent to distribute, in violation of Title 21, U.S.C. §§ 841(a)(1) and (b)(1)(C). The maximum penalty for this charge is up to 20 years of imprisonment, a fine of up to $1 million, and at least 3 years of supervised release.
Count 3 of the indictment charges Banks with possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, in violation of Title 18, U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A)(i). If convicted, she could face a sentence of not less than 5 years up to life imprisonment, to be served consecutively to all other counts. The maximum penalty also includes a fine of up to $250,000 and up to 5 years of supervised release. In addition to these penalties, Banks is also responsible for paying a mandatory special assessment fee of $100.00 for each count.
Project Safe Neighborhoods Program
This case is part of the Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) program, a collaborative effort that brings together law enforcement agencies at all levels and the communities they serve to address violent crime and gun violence. The program aims to reduce crime rates and enhance public safety by implementing strategies based on trust-building, community engagement, proactive enforcement, and measurable outcomes.
Law Enforcement Agencies Involved
The investigation leading to the charges against Jasha Banks involved the collaborative efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD). These agencies worked together to gather evidence, identify and apprehend the individuals involved in illegal activities, and build a strong case for prosecution.
The prosecution of Jasha Banks is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mike Trummel of the Violent Crime Unit. The diligent work of the prosecution team ensures that the case is presented effectively in court and that justice is served. The U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to upholding the law and holding individuals accountable for their actions.
Additional Sentencing Information
The sentencing phase of the case will determine the specific punishment for Jasha Banks. The judge will consider various factors, such as the nature and seriousness of the offenses, the defendant’s criminal history, and any relevant mitigating or aggravating circumstances. The final sentence imposed will aim to provide appropriate punishment, deter future criminal behavior, and protect the community.
This case is not isolated, and it exemplifies ongoing efforts to combat illegal drug trafficking and firearms offenses. It is important to address these issues comprehensively and consistently to ensure public safety and the well-being of communities. Additional related content, including news releases and information about similar cases, can be found on the U.S. Attorney’s Office website and the Department of Justice’s official website.
For more information or inquiries about this case or related matters, please refer to the contact information below:
Shane M. Jones Public Information Officer United States Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Louisiana United States Department of Justice