Special to Iredell Free News

A federal jury in Statesville returned a guilty verdict on Thursday against a Lenoir man at the conclusion of a trial on charges he trafficked fentanyl and illegally possessed firearms.

Jermaine Douglas Grandy, 41, was convicted of conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute fentanyl, possession with intent to distribute fentanyl, possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking crime, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Dena J. King, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina, announced the conviction in a news release.

According to filed court documents, evidence presented at trial and witness testimony, between December 2020 and February 2021, Grandy conspired with others to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute fentanyl in Caldwell County and surrounding areas. Trial evidence established that Grandy obtained the drugs from a supply source in Arizona, and frequently made trips there to purchase fentanyl pills in bulk quantities.

The evidence further established that on February 14, 2021, as Grandy was returning to North Carolina from a trip to Arizona, law enforcement officers conducted a traffic stop of Grandy’s vehicle in Granite Falls. Upon searching the vehicle, officers located three loaded 9mm pistols and approximately 34,221 pills wrapped in fourteen bundles concealed in the air vent under the hood of the car. Later the same day, law enforcement executed a search warrant at a residence associated with Grandy and seized a money counter, two digital scales, and other items consistent with the packaging and distribution of narcotics. Law enforcement also seized 29 illegal firearms, including semi-automatic rifles and handguns, ammunition, and approximately 79 magazines.

Grandy is currently in federal custody. The drug conspiracy and the possession with intent to distribute charges each carry a minimum penalty of 10 years and a maximum penalty of life in prison, the possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime carries a maximum penalty of five years to be served consecutively with any other term imposed, and the possession of a firearm by a felon charge carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison. A sentencing date for Grandy has not been set.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Hess of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Asheville prosecuted the case.