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Heroin dealer convicted, sentenced to lengthy prison time

Michael Eugene Bradley (District Attorney's Office photo)

A herion dealer was sentenced to between 49.5 to 62.5 years in prison on Wednesday.

District Attorney Scott Thomas announced in a press release Michael Eugene Bradley, 38, of Havelock, was convicted by a jury and sentenced. Below are more details from the press release.

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Havelock Police narcotics investigator James Henderson, with the assistance of the Carteret County Sheriff's Office and the Morehead City Police Department, executed a search warrant on Bradley's residence on Trader Street in Havelock, in December, 2015. The search warrant was the result of the investigators having conducted three separate prior controlled buys from Bradley at the residence. Bradley's then-girlfriend and her child were found asleep in the residence when the officers arrived to execute the search warrant; however, Bradley was encountered entering the mobile home park, and attempted to flee in his vehicle, but was taken down soon afterwards, and taken to the residence for the search.

Investigators found a vacuum-sealed package containing 55 grams of heroin, two loaded firearms, and $ 9,000 in cash in an open safe in a closet. They also found "cutting" agents (used to dilute the heroin), a multi-function bill counter, and unused wax paper packaging identical to that containing heroin purchased on the three undercover purchases. Bradley also had an additional $ 1300 in cash in his wallet at the time of arrest.

Bradley was tried on the following counts: Trafficking in Heroin by Possession; Trafficking in Heroin by Manufacture; Possession of a Firearm by Felon; Maintaining a Dwelling for Controlled Substances; Possession of Less than ½ Ounce of Marijuana; Possession of Drug Paraphernalia; and Possession of Marijuana Paraphernalia. He was also indicted as an Habitual Felon, given his lengthy criminal record.

The Craven County jury found Bradley guilty on all counts. Judge Alford sentenced Bradley as an habitual felon to consecutive sentences totaling 596 to 752 months (49 ½ to 62 ½ years) in prison, and imposed a $ 500,000 mandatory fine, court costs, and attorney fees. All of the seized money was turned over to the North Carolina Department of Revenue to pay drug taxes on all of the illegal drugs in Bradley's possession.

District Attorney Scott Thomas said, "Drug dealers are a threat to our communities and we treat them as such. This prosecution represents our ongoing effort to investigate, arrest, and prosecute heroin traffickers. Tough enforcement is required to remove this poison from our communities. We are committed to continuing to work with our law enforcement agencies to fight illegal drug activity. Drug dealers must understand that their conduct will result in a lengthy prison sentence, as in this case."

The cases were prosecuted in court by Assistant District Attorney Chekesha Hukins, and Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Ben Alford presided over the trial.

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