A McNairy County man has pled guilty to his role in a drug trafficking operation in West Tennessee.
U.S. Attorney for West Tennessee Michael Dunavant says 41-year-old Nickolas Atkins, of Selmer, pled guilty Tuesday in Jackson federal court to his role in a conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute in excess of 50 grams of actual methamphetamine.
In March 2018, a joint-task force investigation was initiated into the activities of a drug trafficking organization run by Timmy Jermaine Cole, in which Atkins was a member, involving large quantities of meth, marijuana, and cocaine from individuals in Mexico into West Tennessee for distribution.
On April 15, 2019, a federal grand jury returned a three-count indictment against Cole and Atkins, along with Lynnie Ray Pettigrew, Rolando Garibaldi-Alvarado, Juan Javier Acosta-Melendez, Kelvin Pettigrew, Anthony McElrath, Marcus Canty, Richard Trevino, Bayrin Hinson, Cornelius Talley, Robert Winters, Steven Williams, Scotty Tubbs, and Cindy Cannon.
After his arrest, Atkins was released on bond. During his pre-trial release, law enforcement officers utilizing a confidential informant, purchased hydrocodone pills while Atkins was on bond. Atkins was re-arrested by FBI agents for distributing approximately 600 hydrocodone pills. His pre-trial bond was revoked and Atkins was detained. Thereafter, Atkins was indicted for possession with the intent to distribute and distribution of hydrocodone pills.
Sentencing is scheduled for January 21, 2021 where Atkins faces a sentence of not less than 10 years and up to life in the Federal Bureau of Prisons. There is no parole in the federal system.
The case was investigated by the FBI Safe Streets Task Force, Selmer Police Department, McNairy County Sheriff’s Department, Hardeman County Sheriff’s Department, Decatur County Sheriff’s Department, Lexington Police Department, Dyersburg Police Department, 24th Judicial District Drug Task Force, and Jackson Police Department.