Benton man pleads guilty to methamphetamine, firearms charges

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SHREVEPORT – Eric Charles Means, 33, of Benton, pleaded guilty yesterday before U.S. District Chief Judge S. Maurice Hicks Jr. to possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and possession of firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, U.S. Attorney David C. Joseph announced.

According to the guilty plea, law enforcement officers with the DEA encountered Means on January 24, 2018 in a vehicle in the parking lot of a hotel on Industrial Drive in Bossier City, Louisiana.  Inside the vehicle were plastic baggies containing 12.6 grams of methamphetamine and two firearms in a duffel bag on the front passenger seat.  Means admitted to distributing methamphetamine and that he possessed the firearms for his protection while distributing the drugs.  The two firearms confiscated from the duffel bag were a Smith & Wesson .357-caliber pistol and a Glock .45-caliber pistol, along with ammunition.

Means faces up to 40 years in prison for methamphetamine distribution and at least five years in prison for firearms possession.  He also faces five years of supervised release and a $5 million fine.  The court set the sentencing date for May 23, 2019.

The DEA and ATF conducted the investigation.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian C. Flanagan is prosecuting the case.