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Convicted Athens drug trafficker gets 18 years in federal prison

By Joe Johnson

An man with a lengthy criminal history in Athens has been sentenced to 18 years in federal prison after he admitted to drug trafficking charges.

Wayne Lenard McKinley, 36, was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court in Athens as a career offender to serve 220, or 18.3 years, to be followed by five years of supervised release after he pleaded guilty to one count of distribution of heroin and one count of distribution of cocaine, according to a release issued by Peter Leary, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia.

"Federal prosecutors will not turn a blind eye to repeat criminal activity by violent offenders in Athens or elsewhere in the Middle District of Georgia," Leary said. "Our office will continue to collaborate with local law enforcement to hold repeat criminals accountable for their continued crimes."

"Repeat offenders pose serious threats to public safety in our communities," said Keri Farley, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. "McKinley's history of continued criminal activity demonstrates his lack of concern for the welfare of others and his disregard for the law."

According to court documents, FBI confidential informants contacted McKinley to purchase heroin and cocaine from him in May 2016. The informants agreed to meet McKinley at an apartment complex on Fourth Street in Athens. Under surveillance, McKinley sold the illegal drugs to the informants, and was taken into custody.

McKinley has prior criminal convictions in Athens-Clarke County for aggravated assault, distribution of controlled substances, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, robbery, and making terroristic threats and criminal trespassing.

This case was investigated by the FBI Middle Georgia Safe Streets Gang Task Force, the Northeast Georgia Regional Drug Task Force and the Athens-Clarke County Police Department.

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