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KC-area man sentenced to federal prison for role in 2015 meth conspiracy

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A 36-year-old man from Cass County will serve time in federal prison for drug trafficking in the north-central part of the state, the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Western District of Missouri said in a news release.

Robert R. Hicks, of Belton, pleaded guilty last December to participating in a conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and to possessing firearms in relation to drug trafficking. Prosecutors said Hicks had been involved in a plan to distribute 1.5 kilograms of meth.

The Northwest Missouri Interagency Team Response Operation suspected drug activity in Grundy County and began investigating late in 2014 with the belief the source of the supply was coming from the Kansas City area.

Two times early in 2015, Grandview police stopped Hicks. In January, officers found Hicks in possession of 39.46 grams of pure meth as well as pills and marijuana. Then in February, police found Hicks with two pistols. Later that year, prosecutors said Hicks supplied a co-defendant with 27.6 grams of pure meth and tried to sell it to an undercover officer.

On Thursday, a federal judge ordered Hicks to serve 17 years and seven months in prison without parole.

Hicks is one of six people who pleaded guilty and have been sentenced to prison in the case, prosecutors said.

Other defendants and their sentence are included:

  • Ryan P. Trombley, 33, of Trenton, was sentenced to 11 years and six months

  • Alicia M. Grimes, 50, of Trenton, was sentenced to a year and a day

  • Christopher J. Vaccaro, 42, of Kansas City, was sentenced to 17 years

  • Crystal R. Breshears, 27, of Belton, was sentenced to five years and 10 months

  • Allen R. Watson, 45, of Blue Springs, was sentenced to five years

Prosecutors said another co-defendant, Faron W. Lawrence, 51, of Trenton, also pleaded guilty and awaits sentencing.

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