Felon Convicted of Possessing a Firearm in Furtherance of Drug Trafficking

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FILE PHOTO: The U.S. Department of Justice Building is pictured

RICHMOND, Va. – A federal jury convicted a Hampton man yesterday on charges of possessing a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

According to court records and evidence presented at trial, Christopher McPherson, 30, of Hampton, was arrested in April 2021 for his charged role in a drug trafficking organization. When he was arrested, he was found in possession of a firearm, cocaine, marijuana, a cutting agent to mix with cocaine, a money counting machine, currency and a cocaine press, which is a device used to press powder cocaine into kilogram sized blocks. Witnesses testified that the firearm in his possession was a tool of the drug trade used to intimidate others and to protect McPherson from other drug dealers. The jury also heard that McPherson was previously convicted of a felony and was prohibited from possessing a firearm.

McPherson was convicted of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a conspiracy to distribute heroin, cocaine and marijuana, and of possessing the firearm after having been convicted of a felony. He faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years and a maximum penalty of life imprisonment when sentenced on February 13, 2023. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Jessica D. Aber, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Derek W. Gordon, Acting Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Washington, D.C., made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Robert C. Young accepted the verdict.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric M. Hurt and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth Nielsen are prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 4:21-cr-10.